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Baneful's Column
April 10, 2014

Multiple Special Summons: Pros and Cons

I mentioned in "Baneful's Take IV: Power Creep" that we've moved away from relying on strong LV4 1800-1900 ATK beaters and [mostly] tribute summoning to crank out powerful 2500+ ATK monsters. We can thank Synchro's and XYZ's, as well as the many cards out there that were made to support them, for that. We don't summon one monster and then end the turn anymore. Special Summoning isn't a special occasion anymore like "Yes, I drew Call of the Haunted! I can Special Summon now!".

No!! Not at all. Times have changed. We Special Summon every single turn, often multiple times per turn. There's pros and cons for that. Let's start with the bad news first.

The Bad News

1. Swarming. If I can summon 3 or 4 monsters in the same turn, that's several beat-sticks to attack you directly with, on top of being able to destroy several of your monsters in battle during one turn (the turn that they are summoned). Unless you have a card like Dark Hole or you're able to Special Summon like-crazy yourself, good luck taking down all of those threats.

2. Lockdown. By Special Summoning so much, you can assemble a field of monsters (in conjunction with your spell/traps) that is extremely difficult for the opponent to stop. It can deny so many options and leave few to no viable moves for the opponent, forcing them to set their Effect Veilers and get pummeled to death.

3. Massive Card Advantage. People aren't going to Special Summon a whole bunch of monsters for no reasons. As enticing as summoning an army of monsters that you can count on and take the burden of protecting for the next few turns may seem, that's too risky. Usually, there's insane +1's involved. I mean, there must be, if the player is willing to put in the work for it.

The Good News

1. You aren't vulnerable. One problem in a meta where you can't Special Summon is that if your monster is destroyed by a trap card, you are vulnerable. If my beat-stick is destroyed by Bottomless Trap Hole, I can't summon another monster to protect me. If you already have one, you can summon another and attack me directly twice.

2. It helps different archetypes flourish. As we've moved toward decks where monsters synergized, being able to only summon one monster per turn in a meta where monsters are easily removed yet encouraged to bond and combo with each other would have been contradictory. Now each archetype has a different way of Special Summoning their monsters, fostering more diverse playstyles.

Solutions

Okay, so what are the solutions to this problem? It's quite obvious that there is a bit of good to Special Summoning more than once per turn, so we shouldn't forgo it entirely. I have some potential ideas. There are better and worse ideas out there for sure, but I may as well stimulate some discussion and thought. Pick one or pick none.

Idea A: You cannot Special Summon more than two times per turn (during either player's turn).

Even in a fast flexible meta where you are able to summon three times and pound the opponent, it's quite a permissive rule. It won't make a profound change, but it does stop anything extremely wrong from happening. It's the safest, most hedging, option.

Idea B: You cannot conduct your Battle Phase during a turn in which you Special Summon more than once. And, as a corollary, you can't Special Summon a second time if you had already entered your Battle Phase.

This gives the player the most choice. They can go all out and totally nuts or they can be a bit humble and achieve a balance. You can still Special Summon once and attack, but it discourages swarming or gaining massive advantage from XYZ's. On the downside, even with the Battle Phase skipped, it doesn't preclude nasty lockdowns.

Idea C: A monster cannot attack during the same turn it is Special Summoned.

We can call it "special summoning sickness". Like Idea B except Normal Summoned monster get to attack too. They aren't restricted just because you Special Summoned other monsters. However, this option does not prevent you from Special Summoning like a maniac and making deadly lockdowns.

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Contact: banefulscolumn@gmail.com

 


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