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How is that a game breaker? Yes, Lock can be really annoying, but that's hardly a reason to call Infinite Zero Dragon (IZD for short) a Game Breaker, much less the whole clan. People not knowing how to deal with a new mechanic is not the same as that mechanic being a game breaker.
For starters, IZD is a break ride and so requires the Link Joker player to be at 4 damage. Keep them at 3 damage and the opponent's deck becomes vanilla because 90% of Link Joker's units require that the opponent has a locked unit.
Second, even with 4 copies in the deck there's no guarantee that the Link Joker player will get IZD, and having to ride a different Grade 3 is one of the worst things that can happen to Link Joker user.
And third, the game evolves with time. At first Lock seemed overpowered because people just didn't know how to deal with it. Then:
And all of that is without taking into account the specifics of each clan, such as:
So I fail to see how IZD (or Link Joker as a whole) can be called a game breaker.
Yeah, once Chaos Breaker (draw cards) and Glendios (keep the units locked) got introduced, that Breakride became utterly broken beyond belief.
Keeping you from using those units to defend, attack, unable to even use that slot? How is that not broken?
Doubly so since it's completely free.
Keeping the LJ at 3 damage doesn't help, you're not winning at that point and they can freely attack you. And if you don't call out rear-guards to attack with, they only have to stop one attack a turn.
The mere fact that two new mechanics (unlocking and Legion) had to be introduced to not worry about getting Locked should tell you just how over-powered Locking is.
Not to mention that decks like Nova Grappler and Aqua Force, two clans that NEED their rear-guards to attack, get nerfed heavily by Link Joker.
Locking an interceptor and the Vanguard booster means that you don't have nearly as much to worry about from your opponent on their turn.
Link Joker gets a lot of hate, but the bosses (CBD, NLD, Schwartzchild and Glendios) wouldn't be so bad if IZD didn't exist.
Plus you forget about World Line Dragon, you can search at the start of your ride phase for a Link Joker off the top five cards of your deck every turn until you get to grade 3.
On top of all of that, Link Joker has been dominating tournaments in Japan like you wouldn't believe, and all of them, without fail, run IZD.
Plus there's other support cards, Palladium, which re-locks cards that are unlocking, combined with Chaos Breaker Dragon, lets you keep drawing cards.
Cold Death Dragon will just fill your rear-guard slots up with Locked cards, if you have one already, to power up CBD and Glendios, so, yeah, IZD is pretty broken.
IZD is completely costless for shutting down an entire attack column and a booster (likely the Vanguard booster) for two turns, and if you combine with any of the above cards, it can quickly turn into game over.
When I said "Keep them at 3 damage" I meant "keep them at 3 damage and kill their rearguards until you are ready for your final push". Link Joker is not known for large hand size or a lot of draw power (Chaos Breaker Dragon is the exception, and he requires Limit Break) and - like I wrote - 90% of Link Joker's units require that the opponent has a locked unit. A Link Joker deck at 3 damage has almost no skills to use, so you're dealing with just power and no on-hit pressure. Made even better (or worse, depending on how you look at it) if the Link Joker player is up against a Vanguard with an extra critical - a single critical trigger could mean the end for the LJ player (have fun guarding a vanguard like CEO Yggdrasil while trying to get to 4 damage).
Link Joker dominating tournaments? Yeah, right. They may have dominated for a bit due to all the hype and a lot of players switching to the clan, but that didn't last for long. People switched to Яeverse units, then to CBD because he is a great counter for Яeverse units then to Dauntless-Vague decks, then some switched to Glendios and Яe-birth decks (Dauntless-Vague remained very popular), and now people seem to be jumping to Legion (especially Thing Saver Dragon) because such decks don't need to wait for 4 damage. Things might change when LJ's first Legion unit gets released, but for now Break Ride-dependent decks are no longer what they used to be - and that includes any LJ deck that depends on IZD.
Locking really isn't as powerful as people make it out to be. If it was the unlocking units would be seeing some use.
Believe me when I say this, of all the cards in the game, IZD is widely regarded by everyone to be the most overpowered card in the game.
And you think that strategy hasn't been tried? What if they put no rear guards out to make you attack the vanguard? Then what? Not going to attack at all?
Funny, I can't remember when was the last time someone called IZD "overpowered" (not counting this discussion), so obviously it's not everyone. If it was everyone would be using LJ and nothing else, and that's clearly not the case.
As for what to do if there are no rearguards to attack: That depends on the deck you're using. Worst case scenario: Attack with your vanguard and hope for a critical or two if they choose not to guard. Besides, if they have no reargaurds then you have to guard just 1 attack instead of 3, and that means more cards in your hand and more shield for when they finally use the Break Ride.
But that works both ways if you don't put rear guards out to stop them from getting to 4-5 damage.
Then what? The only alternate win condition in Vanguard is in the Link Joker deck.
You have to realize that IZD is broken, it's easily the best break ride in the game, makes otherwise mediocre to average to good bosses way better than any other boss card in the game.
Heck, the fact that Unlocking is a thing shows just how OP locking is, and IZD is the biggest reason behind it.
The mere fact that the only viable strategies against Link Joker are literally 1: Keep them to 3 damage forever until you feel you can withstand a big push and 2: Don't put out rear-guards...
Yeah, totally not OP at all.
And, just so you know, I've DONE both strategies before, and it does work to a small extent, but it's very impractical and you're likely losing anyway.
Ask yourself this...
Against ANY other clan, any other clan in the game...
Do you need to use a strategy similar to combat them like you do Link Joker, especially if you see a IZD on the field?
Yes, there are other cards that make you use special strategy against them. A few examples:
And so on. ANY Break Ride can cost you the game if you are caught unprepared - IZD is hardly the only one. But because of all the LJ hyper and people not knowing how to deal with lock it seems to get a bit more hate.
Once LJ get their own Legions and people stop using IZD because it slows their game too much the complaints will end.
Completely Missing the Point is what you are.
IZD is broken, end of discussion. Daikaiser needs to get a Grade 3 to work fully, Bad End Dragger, yeah, that's very good, but it's not NEARLY as bad as IZD is.
And Metalborgs are their own kind of thing.
No other deck, other than Kagero and sometimes Shadow Paladin (Revengers) even comes CLOSE to matching Link Joker.
Here's a (quick) list of clans that Link Joker, especially, ESPECIALLY if you break ride over IZD with, UTTERLY NERFS by existing...
IZD, BY ITSELF, UTTERLY screws over 8 of 17 clans, that's about half, BTW, and all of those clans rely on having rear guards to use to get the full effects.
And other than possibly Liberator Monarch Alfred, none of the Unlockers have made a dent on the strangle-hold that Link Joker has had on tournaments. Only Kagero and Shadow Paladin (to an extent) have.
And none of those other cards that you mentioned punishes you for playing cards on the field at all.
Yes, there are other cards that are powerful.
NONE of them punishes you for 2+ turns for playing cards like IZD (and anything that rides it) can and does.
Face it, despite what you think, IZD is, beyond a doubt, utterly broken. +10 K to the Vanguard, lock two rear guards, all for zero cost?
ANY Break Ride needs another Grade 3 (or Grade 4) to work. That's not something exclusive to Daikaiser or IZD.
Aqua Force have a tough match up against Link Joker - no argument here.
Dimension Police: The DP I know focuses on the vanguard and doesn't really care about the rearguards. The most you can do by locking their rearguards is block the use of Laurel. But you still have a powerful vanguard, oftentimes with an extra critical, that you have to deal with.
All the other clans you listed: Depends on the build. For example, Amon Яeverse doesn't need many rearguards; Perfect Raiser needs just one Raiser unit that is not locked; Pale Moon and Great Nature really depend on the build and who gets to Break Ride first; and so on.
Any deck focused on retiring punishes you for having rearguards. Megacolony's Break Ride also punishes you for having rearguards, as it stuns all of your units - either you minus yourself by calling new units and retiring the old ones, or you miss on attacking (and on 2+ cards from your twin drive).
Claiming that LJ screws 8 of the clans is like claiming that Kagero and Narukami screw 8 of the clans because they retire rearguards and the 8 clans need rearguards.
If IZD really was as "utterly broken" as you claim everyone would be using LJ and nothing else. That is clearly not the case and until LJ gets some good Legion units the number of LJ players will only keep on going down.
The cost of a Link Joker deck is among the highest in the game, only the Revenger Shadow Paladins are really comparable at this time, so, yeah, of course there's not a ton of players running it. The Perfect Guards are 80-100 for a set.
And when I said "needs another grade 3" I meant off the drive check, otherwise Daikaiser's just the same as Ashlei, which is considered the most vanilla and underwhelming break ride in Vanguard.
DP still needs rearguards to work, which puts them out there to get locked by Link Joker.
Narukami focus on the front-line and Kagero, yes, Kagero can screw over the same amount, but you notice how, other than The End, no one complains about Kagero? It's almost like they're balanced or something.
There's a BIG FREAKING difference between Locking, Paralyze and Retiring. Know what that is?
The zone is STUCK when it's locked. Paralyze and Retire? You can still use the zone.
Stun a grade 2? I can still intercept. Retire a Grade 2? I can at least replace it. Lock a grade 2? I'm boned for two turns (at least) with that card.
Again, other than Kagero and (to an extent) Shadow Paladins, there is ZERO other clans/decks that can compete with Link Joker. Look at some tournament reports some time. Look at what comes in at the top constantly.
Yes, Legion might cause people to move away from it.
It doesn't make the card any less broken.
DOTE and MLB is/was/were pretty damn good, and people played other decks when they was at their peak. But MLB, The End and Tsukuyomi (the third deck that topped) were the only decks that were constantly seen at the top tables.
So claiming that people "would only use LJ and nothing else" is a false argument.
But, you know what? Fine, I won't change your mind, keep it off of the page if you want to, I don't give a rat's ass anymore.
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