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Creative Deck Strategy: Unchained Scrap

As Wyvern breaks free of his OCG-only chains to enter the TCG, so could you!

Enter the Scrapyard:

Debuting near the end of the Synchro era, the Scrap archetype features an array of haphazard types, effects, and strategies, all bound together by the common theme of destruction. Some of the Scraps want to be destroyed, some of them like to recover destroyed Scraps, and then there’s the factory that lets you benefit even more from destroyed Scraps. While this strategy has been all over the place for years, it is about to get a major boost in the form of their own Link Monster – Scrap Wyvern, coming soon to the TCG in the upcoming Chaos Impact Special Edition alongside the Six Samurai link (which was separately featured in a Community Collab article last week: Check THIS out!).

Scrap Wyvern is a Link 2 monster with two essential effects for any Scrap deck moving forward. First, it can summon a Scrap monster from your GY, then you destroy 1 card you control. The second effect triggers when a Scrap monster is destroyed by a card effect, letting you summon a Scrap monster from the deck then destroying a card anywhere on the field. Despite benefiting Scrap monsters, Wyvern isn’t all too picky in material requirements as it just needs at least 1 Scrap monster as material, so it can be easily accessed through a Normal Summon of Scrap Recycler sending Crystron Rosenix or Mecha Phantom Beast O-Lion. Where this card really starts to shine in giving your deck untargeting destruction, combo setup, and easy access to the most unkillable monster currently available to the game.

But before we get too deep into the Scrap monsters, let’s talk about the sister archetype that pairs ever so nicely with it – the Unchained.

Relinquish your Chains:

The Unchained (and Unchained Soul) archetypes are a pair of nested themes that revolve around Link Summoning using your opponent’s monsters as material. Along the way, all of the support cards trigger while they are destroyed by a card effect. For example, even their tutoring spell, Abomination’s Prison, has an effect that if the set card was destroyed by a card effect, you can Special Summon an Unchained monster from the deck. This effect is featured on all of the Spell and Trap cards.

The other side of the Unchained archetype are the monsters. There are two Twins: Unchained Twins – Aruha and Unchained Twins – Rakea. The first destroys a card you control to Special Summon itself from your hand, and the second just flat out destroys a card you control as a quick effect. And then both share the effect to Special Summon an Unchained monster from the deck when destroyed on the field, except itself. The final effect monster is Unchained Soul of Disaster, a Level 8 fiend that can use an opponent’s monster as Link material for a DARK Link Summon, and a second effect that triggers when destroyed to Special Summon another Unchained monster from your GY.

Why Scrap as the Hybrid:

While the Unchained theme has been discussed at length as having serious promise when combined with the True Dracos, there is some benefit to taking the hybrid a bit more in the combo direction. True Draco Unchained is great at continuing to expand the control and disruption elements of the pure Draco deck at the cost of some consistency, but I wanted to try something with a bit more speed to pair alongside the Unchained. The fact of the matter is that Unchained simply don’t have enough cards to work all too effectively in a pure build, and even when they are built pure, they are just too slow. So with the help of Scraps, the goal of this CDS build is to accelerate the theme to usable levels!

So while that covers why not choosing True Draco, let’s talk about why Scrap. First, pure Scrap has an insane amount of variability. Like variable to the point where no sane person should try to bring that archetype in pure form to any tournament, because you have so many dead hands. But when it does get a combo going, it can go off strong. It also offers unique OTK opportunities, such as giving your opponent a weak monster to OTK through with a 10,000 ATK Utopia. Also, in the off chance you do just draw your backrow Unchained support, the Scraps still offer options for destroying them to unleash the Soul from your deck.

All things considered, these two themes serve each other well – covering the other’s weaknesses with a strength – so that’s how a hybrid here can work well. Remember, if you are going to try to hybrid two archetypes into one cohesive strategy, each part needs to be contributing something to make it worth it in the end. Some duels you’ll have pieces of both, so they better work together when you do!

The Decklist:

Click Here to view the decklist in the Official Card Database

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An Opening Combo:

The first thing to note about the abomination of a hybrid deck is that the end boards this thing can put up are not easily broken. Let’s take for example the board of opening Scrap Recycler + any Unchained backrow.

  • Normal Recycler, sending Mecha Phantom Beast O-Lion from deck to GY, which activates summoning a Token.
  • Link Summon Scrap Wyvern using Recycler and the Token.
  • Set your Unchained backrow.
  • Use Wyvern’s 1st effect, summoning Recycler then destroying it.
  • Wyvern’s 2nd effect triggers, summoning Scrap Golem from your deck then destroying your set Unchained backrow.
  • Your Unchained backrow triggers, summoning Unchained Soul of Disaster from deck.
  • *Use Golem’s effect, summoning Recycler back from the GY, triggering Recycler which sends Crystron Rosenix from deck to the GY.
  • Use Rosenix’s effect, banishing itself to summon a Crystron token.
  • Link Summon I:P Masquerena using Recycler and your token.
  • Link Summon Mekk-Knight Crusadia Avramax using I:P and Wyvern.
  • Link Summon Unchained Soul of Rage using Disaster and Golem.

Notice that this is just a 2-card combo, and you end with an untargetable Avramax that can’t be destroyed by card effects and effectively can’t be destroyed by battle and an Unchained Soul of Rage. Note – Rage gives you the ability to disrupt your opponent’s plays by using an opponent’s monster for a link summon, so that makes it even less likely for your opponent to be able to break through your board. Even Super Poly won’t help your opponent alone since there is no Fusion to break that board… at least until Earth Golem @Ignister (YGOrg Translation) arrives in an upcoming set next year.

Additional combos unlocked using the Scrap-heavy build featured above:

If you are wondering why the above build runs so many solo Scrap monsters, it is because they each open up unique opportunities for this hybrid deck. First, let’s talk Scrap Searcher and Scrap Shark. Scrap Shark is in the deck as the in-theme Foolish Burial for Scraps, since none of the useful Scraps outside of Recycler are machines, so it’s singular purpose is to get that Searcher to the GY. Once Searcher is in the GY, a secondary win condition for the deck is unlocked. First, Searcher can summon itself back when a Scrap monster is destroyed. But when it does, all non-Scrap monsters you control are destroyed. How is this useful? Well, just imagine if you could summon it to your opponent’s field… in ATK position.

Well guess what – you can! Scrap Golem lets you summon a Level 4 or lower Scrap to either player’s field, so by summoning Searcher to your opponent’s field, you get to destroy the rest of the monsters they control, then potentially attack over the 100 ATK pipsqueak for game. This is also a great time to talk about the Utopia Double combo which can be achieved through the other scrap engine, Scrap Chimera and the Level 4 Tuner engine. Sure, this unlocks an easy R4 Xyz Summon, but it also has the versatility to let you go into the original Scrap Dragon in a pinch if you need to trigger a set Unchained support card while destroying something your opponent controls!

The last thing I need to highlight in its own section is Scrap Factory. This is a great Field Spell for the theme – my only wish is that it was also a combo starter as well (similar to how Union Hangar serves as a combo starter and extender for ABCs). While you have Factory, whenever a Scrap monster is destroyed by a card effect, you get to Special Summon a new Scrap monster from the deck. You may think of this as being unneeded now that Wyvern is coming, but it more serves as an amplifier to Wyvern’s effect – with Factory, you get to summon 2 Golem from the deck during the normal combo. Fun times.

 

Alternative Options:

This combination of archetypes is really cool not only for the synergies between the two but because there is a noteable amount of extra space to fill in between the main combo cards. Remember, our 2-card combo detailed above needs only a limited portion of each archetype.

As you probably noticed, the option I went with for the original decklist was to fill in the remaining space with more Scrap cards for additional combos, the Utopia double engine for OTKs, and a maximized Unchained core. This gives a bigger spotlight to the two main archetypes for this article, but it is worth considering how else you could use the remaining deckspace. So let’s do that!

God Says No:

The first option would be to lean fully into disrupting any response from your opponent. After your initial combo using the Machine tokens alongside Recycler, you shouldn’t ever have duplicate types on your board, so you can easily tech in at least one floodgate. So – There Can Only be One, Imperial Order, Crackdown, and other disruption options such as the Solemn suite fit right in here. The Changelist from the decklist earlier is as follows:

Remove:
-1 Scrap Beast, -1 Scrap Orthos, -1 Scrap Shark, -1 Scrap Searcher, -1 Scrap Chimera, -2 Scrap Factory, -1 Terraforming, -2 Scrapyard, -1 Double or Nothing, -1 Number 39: Utopia, -1 Number 39: Utopia Double, -1 Scrap Dragon, -1 Scrap Twin Dragon

Add:
+3 There Can Only Be One, +3 Solemn Strike, +3 Solemn Judgment, +2 Crackdown, +1 Triple Burst Dragon, +1 Underclock Taker, +1 Salamangreat Almiraj, +1 Black Luster Soldier – Soldier of Chaos

This variant of the deck plays more of a control/combo style – after getting your initial combo, you want to just straight up say no to anything your opponent tries. While immensely frustrating for them, it can be quite hilarious to actually play!

Orcust:

While Scrap Orcust may become a thing in it’s own right, you actually have plenty of room to tech in an Orcust suite into this packed hybrid. In exchange for some main deck space and some extra deck space, you have the option to end our initial combo by sending an Orcust instead with the second activation of Recycler. With that as your intended play, this also opens you up to creating Topologic Bomber Dragon with your I:P Masquerena instead!

Remove:
-1 Scrap Beast, -1 Scrap Orthos, -1 Scrap Shark, -1 Scrap Searcher, -1 Scrap Chimera, -2 Scrapyard, -1 Double or Nothing, -1 Crystron Rosenix, -1 Number 39: Utopia, -1 Number 39: Utopia Double, -1 Scrap Dragon, -1 Scrap Twin Dragon, -1 Unchained Soul of Anguish

Add:
+1 Orcust Cymbal Skeleton, +1 Orcust Harp Horror, +1 Orcust Knightmare, +1 World Legacy World Wand, +1 Orcustrated Babel, +1 Orcust Crescendo, +1 Orcustrated Return, +1 Gizmek Oroshi, the Serpention Sky Slasher, +1 Dingirsu, the Orcust of the Evening Star, +2 Galatea, the Orcust Automaton, +1 Longirsu, the Orcust Orchestrator, +1 Topologic Bomber Dragon

What this does is modify the original combo, starting with the step marked with an (*).

  • *Use Golem’s effect, summoning Recycler back from the GY, triggering Recycler which sends Orcust Harp Horror from deck to the GY.
  • Use Harp Horror’s effect, banishing itself to summon Orcust Knigthmare from the deck.
  • Link Summon Galatea, the Orcust Automaton using Recycler and Knightmare.
  • Use Knightmare’s effect, sending Orcust Cymbal Skeleton from deck to GY.
  • Use Galatea’s effect, returning Harp Horror to the deck and setting Orcustrated Babel to your field. Then activate Babel.
  • Xyz Summon Dingirsu, the Orcust of the Evening Star using Galatea as material, triggering its effect which then attaches the banished Knightmare as material.
  • Link Summon I:P Masquerena using Dingirsu and Scrap Golem.
  • Link Summon Topologic Bomber Dragon using I:P and Wyvern.

After this combo, you have a Topologic who cannot be destroyed by card effects, a live Cymbal Skeleton and Dingirsu in your GY to summon during the opponent’s turn to force a field nuke. Still, this is just an extension of our earlier 2-card play. Imagine what you could do with additional cards. Take for example that you began the turn with a Scrap Factory in hand – that gives you an additional Golem from the deck when Wyvern first destroys your Recycler, which then summons another material to the field for even more plays.

Looking Forward:

The last option I want to highlight today looks forward to the next Unchained monster coming soon in the first main booster set of 2020. The Abominable Unchained Soul (YGOrg Translation) is an additional Level 8 Unchained monster that adds a unique dimension to the deck. First, whenever a card you control is destroyed, you can Special Summon it from the hand. Second, when it is Special Summoned, you can discard 1 card to destroy 1 other card on the field. Its last effect is also powerful – if it was destroyed on the field, during that turn’s End Phase, it can special summon itself back to your field. While you can only summon one of this monster per turn, he is definitely a force to be reckoned with, especially as a pseudo-hand trap! Oh, plus it’s another Level 8 Fiend-type monster that can work with your Dark Spirit of Banishment and Dark Spirit of Malice!

What this one card does for the theme as a whole (in addition to all of the variations discussed today) is that it allows for you to get ‘dead’ draws out of your hand and into the GY where you want them. For example if you had the misfortune of drawing Rosenix, simply summon Abominable from the deck instead of Disaster off of your set Unchained backrow during the combo chain, and you can discard that Rosenix. Once this officially comes, you can also main deck a copy of Gizmek Orochi, the Serpentron Sky Slasher as a third machine to use as Link material, since you will be able to consistently be able to get dead drawn machines out of the hand!

 

Go Make this Better:

Just to close the loop – this is a unique CDS article as the highlighted decklist probably isn’t the best way to run the proposed strategy. From my testing, I’ve found that the Orcust build has the most power with more frequent dead hands, while the Scrap build has the best chance of digging out of a bad draw situation. So if you are a player willing to sacrifice a bit of power for more consistency like me, maybe you might like the Scrap build more.

That said, I’m still convinced that there is probably a better way to execute this hybrid. Whether it is playing draw power, more hand traps, or something, I’m sure someone out there can take this further. If that sounds like you – I wish you the best and hope that this can inspire you to try to take an established archetype in a new direction. After all, that’s the point of new support cards!

Conclusion:

If you’ve made it this far you’ve read a lot about Scraps and the Unchained. Hopefully it didn’t shackle you down too much or cause too much wailing. But this hybrid of archetypes plays off each other exceptionally well – destroying your own cards is just in the DNA of both themes. So I implore you to try this out and make the concept shine – it’s a fun deck to get to know, use, and exploit against an unsuspecting opponent! Thanks for reading and catch you next time.


Reminder, I also take suggestions for future CDS articlesI really want to see some input from you! 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! On most YGO-related communities my username is Quincymccoy, so feel free to reach out.

Quincymccoy

Hello everybody! I serve as Number VIII of the Organization; however, my main role on the site is writing Deck Strategy articles to introduce you all to better ways to approach underloved or underutilized archetypes.