OCG 2023.01 Metagame Report #0

Welcome to Week #0 of the OCG 2023.01 format.

This report will tabulate 82 top-performing decks from 13 tournaments that were held in Japan, China Mainland and South Korea during 17 – 25 December 2022, played under the new OCG 2023.01 Limit Regulation.

New Product Release

  • Premium Pack 2023
  • Promotion Pack 2023
  • V Jump February 2023 promotional card: Sky Striker Ace – Azalea
  • Secret Utility Box

Metagame Breakdown

  • 23 Tri-Brigade (19 Spright Tri-Brigade, 4 Scareclaw Tri-Brigade)
  • 6 Labrynth
  • 5 Spright (3 Spright, 2 Melffy Spright)
  • 4 Tearlaments (3 Ishizu Tearlaments, 1 Ishizu Kashtira Tearlaments)
  • 3 Dragon Link (2 Bystial Dragon Link, 1 Grass Bystial Dragon Link)
  • 3 Kashtira
  • 3 Runick (2 Runick, 1 Spright Runick)
  • 3 Sky Striker
  • 3 Spright Gishki
  • 2 Adamancipator (1 Adamancipator, 1 Ishizu Vernusylph Adamancipator)
  • 2 Branded Bystial
  • 2 Branded Bystial Despia (1 Branded Bystial Despia, 1 Grass Branded Bystial Despia)
  • 2 Drytron (1 Drytron, 1 Grass Drytron)
  • 2 Exosister
  • 2 Floowandereeze
  • 2 Ishizu Vernusylph Naturia
  • 2 Luna
  • 2 Shaddoll (1 Tearlaments Shaddoll, 1 Grass Tearlaments Shaddoll)
  • 2 Spright Evil★Twin
  • 1 Bystial Thunder Dragon
  • 1 Generaider
  • 1 Grass Ishizu Tearlaments Thunder Dragon P.U.N.K. Bystial
  • 1 Invoked Therion
  • 1 Kashtira Scareclaw
  • 1 Mathmech @Ignister
  • 1 Ninja
  • 1 Spright Prank-Kids
  • 1 Traptrix


Kusyano (クシャノ) went 10-0 and finished 1st in “16th Tetsu Champion Ship ~Road to TCS~” which had 141 participants.

Spright Tri-Brigade has been around in the metagame since Spright was released back in Power of the Elements, but has been largely overshadowed by Spright, Tearlaments and Kashtira. But the Limit Regulations have dealt a heavy hand to these decks, severely lowering their power level and consistency, allowing for Spright Tri-Brigade to shine.

Tri-Brigade and Spright have a certain amount of synergy that allowed the two themes to flow together and form a congruous strategy. Tri-Brigade Kitt is a Level 2 monster and could be sent to the graveyard with Spright Sprind effect, Tri-Brigade Kitt and Tri-Brigade Kerass are Level 2 monsters and could be Special Summoned by Spright Elf and Gigantic Spright effect, while Nimble Beaver is a Beast monster and could be banished as cost to activate the effect of Tri-Brigade monsters.

Using Spright Starter or Gigantic Spright would restrict the player to only Special Summoning Level/Rank/Link 2 monsters, but that is just a minor inconvenience. Tri-Brigade Kerass is a Level 2 monster, Tri-Brigade Kitt Tri-Brigade Ferrijit the Barren Blossom, Tri-Brigade Bearbrumm the Rampant Rampager and Ancient Warriors Oath – Double Dragon Lords are Link-2 monsters, so they could be Special Summoned as usual. While the player could not end on Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess directly, they could go into I:P Masquerena first, and using I:P Masquerena effect to Link Summon Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess on the opponent’s turn.


Hetawo (ヘタヲ) went 6-1-1 and finished 5 – 8th in “16th Tetsu Champion Ship ~Road to TCS~” which had 141 participants.

Labrynth is a Trap heavy control deck that debut in Deck Build Pack: Tactical Masters, but only became competitive with the addition of Lady Labrynth of the Silver Castle in Darkwing Blast and Big Welcome Labrynth in Photon Hypernova.

Labrynth controls the opponent by using Normal Traps to pick off the opponent’s monsters, and in turn triggers the other Labrynth card effects to gain card advantage.

Hetawo opted for a Rank 4 build, running the full 3 copies of Ariane the Labrynth Servant and Arianna the Labrynth Servant in the Main Deck. Rank 4 opens up the option to go into Number 41: Bagooska the Terribly Tired Tapir, and D/D/D Wave King Caesar into D/D/D Deviser King Deus Machinex, and even Number 77: The Seven Sins. Since these are all Fiend Monsters, they could be Xyz Summoned even while under the restriction placed by Welcome Labrynth.

As mentioned in his tweet (@anohito_YP), Evilswarm Exciton Knight is something that he would like to add to the Extra Deck, a Rank 4 Fiend Xyz Monster that provides a board wipe effect. Chaos Hunter in the Side Deck is something that he would likely cut.


hulu went 6-2 and finished 5 – 8th in “16th Tetsu Champion Ship ~Road to TCS~” which had 141 participants.

Spright was the best deck in the OCG 2022.04 format, but has since been dethroned by Ishizu Tearlaments at the end of the format, and then received two waves of hits by the Limit Regulations that follows.

Spright initial end board consist of Toadally Awesome, which became forbidden in the OCG 2022.07 Limit Regulation. Then Spright pivoted over to Union Carrier to equip Dragon Buster Destruction Sword, which became forbidden in the OCG 2022.10 Limit Regulation. With the weakening of Tearlaments in OCG 2023.01, Spright could spring back to the top of the competitive scene.

Artifact Dagda is Spright latest weapon of choice. Artifact Dagda effect would set Artifact Scythe from deck to the field , then during the opponent’s turn, I:P Masquerena effect would Link Summon Sky Striker Ace – Azalea. Upon being Special Summoned, Sky Striker Ace – Azalea effect would destroy Artifact Scythe, which would Special Summon itself from graveyard and then deny the opponent from Special Summoning monsters from the Extra Deck for the rest of this turn.

Of course the Scythe lock is only useful against decks that rely on Special Summoning from the Extra Deck. Against decks such as Labrynth, I:P Masquerena effect would be used to Link Summon Mekk-Knight Crusadia Avramax or Topologic Zeroboros instead.

Using Cyber-Stein effect to Special Summon Naturia Exterio is also an end board option. Cyber-Stein could be searched out by using Spright Sprind to send from deck to the graveyard, and then using Spright Elf Special Summon from the graveyard. However, Cyber-Stein effect has to be activated before playing Gigantic Spright or Spright Starter as they would prevent Naturia Exterio, a Level 10 Fusion Monster, from being Special Summoned.


Zekkei (ぜっけい) went 6-2 and finished 5 – 8th in “16th Tetsu Champion Ship ~Road to TCS~” which had 141 participants.

Tearlaments had dominated for two consecutive format OCG 2022.07 and OCG 2022.10, before receiving a heavy-handed hit in the OCG 2023.01 Limit Regulation. With Tearlaments Kitkallos forbidden, Tearlaments has to rely on using King of the Swamp to Fusion Summon Tearlaments Rulkallos. King of the Swamp is an Aqua monster and could be used to Fusion Summon Tearlaments Kaleido-Heart, and also opens up the option to go into Grapha, Dragon Overlord of Dark World.

While King of the Swamp is in hand, it could be discarded to add Polymerization from deck to hand. Polymerization could then be played to Fusion Summon Guardian Chimera to destroy cards on opponent’s field.

Running Shaddoll monsters in the Main Deck is also seeing a return for Fusion Summoning El Shaddoll Winda. Shaddoll Fusion in the Side Deck could be boarded in when going second to send a DARK Tearlaments monster from deck to graveyard by Fusion Summoning El Shaddoll Winda, or to send an EARTH Ishizu monster from deck to graveyard by Fusion Summoning El Shaddoll Shekhinaga. The Trigger Effect of the Tearlaments monster or Ishizu monster that was sent to the graveyard could then be activated.


The OCG 2023.01 Limit Regulation dealt a heavy blow to both Tearlaments and Kashtira, resulting in a reset of the metagame. In the new slower format, Spright Tri-Brigade stands above the rest and is the only deck that has been able to consistently make the top cut across various tournaments. Labrynth, Spright and Tearlaments are only marginally above the rest and it is yet to see if they could retain their position over the next few weeks.

Spright is rather popular in the current metagame, being played as a deck itself, and as a package in Tri-Brigade, Evil★Twin and Gishki. Droll & Lock Bird is a decent counter against them and as a result has seen an uptake in the Side Deck. After the opponent used Spright Blue effect to add Spright Jet to hand, Droll & Lock Bird could be activated, and that would prevent Spright Jet from adding a Spright Spell/Trap to hand later in the turn. It also effectively disrupts Tri-Brigade and Gishki, stopping Tri-Brigade Nervall from adding another Tri-Brigade monster, Tri-Brigade Bearbrumm the Rampant Rampager from adding Tri-Brigade Revolt, Gishki Abyss from adding another Gishki monster, Gishki Vision from adding a Gishki Ritual Monster, and Gishki Shadow from adding a Gishki Ritual Spell.

The top decks in the format are also lacking in Spell/Trap negation, resulting in Evenly Matched seeing heavy play in the Side Deck as a powerful board wipe when going second. As a countermeasure, Solemn Judgment is ran in the Side Deck, and will be boarded in when going first to stop the opponent’s board wipes.

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31 Responses

  1. who says:

    3Dragon Link,but i can’t see Dragon link on the chart.

  2. Michael Aninang says:

    Ban Spright Elf

  3. Sgt.Mashoudou says:

    In the Tearlaments decklist section, Guardian Chimera states it can only use materials from hand or field, thus Tearlaments monsters’ effect cannot fusion into it in the first place.

    • Akira says:

      You are right. I was thinking about “Blazing Cartesia, the Virtuous” when writing that portion. Corrected, thanks!

  4. A says:

    Why does the Trib deck run Mercourier package?

    • Minh Dương says:

      Mercourier can be added by Nervall, can be discarded by Kerass, can be banished by Tri-Brigade monsters, and later can be salvaged by Sword milled by Albion

    • BZago says:

      It’s just a neat advantage engine, like if you have a Kitt trigger after already activated nervall you can dump mercourier.

      When merc is banned (usually as cost for a tri effect), it adds Albion from the deck, which sends a branded blade from deck to the gy to cycle back in the deck, then you banish b blade to add merc back to hand.

      that way you get two extra cards in hand, something tri brigade loves as things like farrijit’s gy effect and both bearbrum’s effects can easily turn extra cards in hand in advantage

  5. 123 says:

    Don’t have LL Tri-Brigade ??

  6. Travis says:

    Does anyone know where the invoked Theron decklist is located

  7. rafael pereira oliveira rios says:

    why OCG is not using dracoslayer?

  8. J says:

    Anyone knows where to find the Tribrigade Scareclaw lists?

  9. Tio says:

    where the mathmech ignister list

  10. KMC says:

    Question fro tribrigade champ,
    Whats branded balde for?

  11. LordRubix says:

    Need to ban Maxx C

  12. Emerson Hall says:

    Anyone know where the traptrix list is?

  13. Ornet says:

    I have a question about the tri-brigade spright, tri-brigade branded or simply pure, they have Scareclaw Light-Heart in the extra deck, they don’t play any Scareclaw, I don’t understand

    • Akira says:

      “Scareclaw Light-Heart” is a Beast-Warrior monster, so it can be Special Summoned via Tri-Brigade Monster Effect by banishing 1 Beast, Beast-Warrior, and/or Winged Beast monster from the graveyard. Then “Scareclaw Light-Heart” and that Tri-Brigade monster can be used to Link Summon “Tri-Brigade Ferrijit the Barren Blossom”.

      A common scenario is when your “Tri-Brigade Fraktall” effect to send 1 Level 3 or lower Beast, Beast-Warrior, or Winged Beast monster from deck to graveyard gets negated. In this case you could still Normal Summon “Tri-Brigade Kitt” and activate its effect by banishing “Tri-Brigade Fraktall” from the graveyard to Special Summon “Scareclaw Light-Heart” from the Extra Deck. Then use “Tri-Brigade Kitt” and “Scareclaw Light-Heart” to Link Summon “Tri-Brigade Ferrijit the Barren Blossom”. “Tri-Brigade Kitt” effect would send “Tri-Brigade Nervall” to the graveyard, whose effect would add “Tri-Brigade Kerass” from deck to hand. Finally “Tri-Brigade Ferrijit the Barren Blossom” effect could Special Summon “Tri-Brigade Kerass” from hand.

    • Ornet says:

      Thanks Akira, i could not find the answer, I see that it is a very good link to go through a denial

  14. JOzza1302 says:

    I’d love to see the Ninja deck list

  15. JeweledMoon says:

    Does anyone know where I can find the Spright Gishki lists?

    • Rygon says:

      I’m also interested. I’m trying to find a list for this tournaments, if get any luck let me know.

  16. Frozeneye says:

    Sorry for the late comment, but do you happen to have a source on the Spright/Prank-Kids list mentioned in this article?

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