Have you ever wondered?
Have you ever wondered WHY so many people are making the exodus from Yugioh towards Vanguard?
There are many, many other games out there that people can move to, so why do people choose to move towards Vanguard?
To name a few examples, theres the omnipresent MTG, but there was also Battle Spirits, the newly released ZX, and many more. Even within the Trading Card Game genre, there were so many other options.
Well, as with any exodus, there are two factors: Push, and Pull.
Push Factors are factors which cause someone to want to quit the game.
Pull Factors are factors which cause people to want to start the game.
An exodus is, with anything, these factors applying to a massive amount of people in a short time.
We shall start with the Push Factors, shall we?
Not all archetypes are made equal.
This was always true. All archetypes are designed around certain concepts. Some of those concepts just, thanks to the nature of the game design, better than others.
Special summoning while destroying things is very good in yugioh.
Easy special summoning and superior combat potential is very good in yugioh
Reviving cards and synchroing into monsters is very good in yugioh
Weak monsters with mediocre effects that combo into cards that make you give up 3 or more cards for one medium powered monster? Less so.
This is very true in any card game, actually. Not all archetypes end up equal or even close to it.
Some ideas and concepts are just so bad, they just flop.
Sometimes, is the meta that causes it to flop, and other times its just certain overpowered cards that push certain decks that use it over the top.
Less Reliance on Skill
Yugioh has always been heavily reliant on individual card power and comboes more than anything else.
Because of lack of anything to mediate game tempo, such as Mana in MTG and Duel Masters, Cores in Battle Spirits, or Grades in Vanguard, or "Resources"(lol) in ZX, in Yugioh, you can do a lot of things in one turn without the opponent having equal opportunity to do so(to a certain extent)
Now, Yugioh did FINE without anything to mediate game tempo, in fact becoming one of the most successful card games in the history of card games, despite this being the glaring design flaw.
Because of this ability to do a bajillion things without much limit, deck design and card power were much more factors in the game.
Some players leave in search of a more difficult/demanding game.
The game never gets old. Players do. They look for something different now that they feel they are more mature.
The meta from Mid 2011 to mid 2012 is/was disgusting.
Insectors, Heiratics, Ritua first turn strip hand, Wind Ups loop strip hand, Dark Worlds being Dark Worlds.
Heroes went from being Metabeat to another ridiculous OTK,
September 2011 destroyed some of the best Synchros and their engines, and the meta turned to becoming exceed dominated, leading people to say "Exceeds are the worst thing to happen to the game".
BUT, compare the metas to previous ones.
What about when BF first came out?
What about TeleDAD.
Although compared to now, it seems like a much more fair and less overpowered,
What about when they came out?
They each were so overwhelming for the meta to handle, JUST AS Insektors and Heiratics and such have been to their predecessors.
The difference is that less people were thinking and innovating, and that there were less people finding ways to out-play these decks, etc.
Each of the top tier decks, when they first come out, made a splash.
THEN, people learned that NOTHING IS INVINCIBLE.
The difference was that less people were aware of it this time around.
Many of the good players that would turn the gears of the game dissappeared, for one reason or another.
Some players made different decks
Some players made completely new deck types.
Some players developed concepts to beat the meta.
Nowadays, people hardly look beyond their "Staples" and their archetype that was handed to them.
Some of the best decks in history had to pull upon a huge variety of cards from throughout history to build the deck, to make it work.
Compare Tele-Dad to Goat Control to Gishki.
TeleDAD and Goat Control both used a wide variety of cards throughout the seasons. Gishki only uses their Gishki cards
Because of this lack of innovation, ways of using different combination of card, instead of just the same old combos.
Its not the game designers fault, its the players.
The "Top Faces" dont innovate, and Innovators dont become "Top Faces"
Hence, people see the same thing every time they play, be it locals, casual, or tournament play.
People considered Yugioh ZEXAL to be a move towards a more kiddy air and less towards the "more mature" audience of middle and high schoolers.
Especially from 5Ds, which wasnt exactly for middle schoolers even, this was a huge change.
Most of the audience that liked 5Ds did NOT like ZEXAL, and after a few attempts to keep up with change, and didnt like it.
The change in season and series is a choice, but the choice was for Konami, as, in fact, they have increased their sales, as the new ZEXAL instead targets the younger audience. Konami is cycling out its older audience(20s-30s) for a newer (6-18s). This newer audience will be buying Yugioh for a few more years. Its a sound marketing strategem.
Which makes this another push factor. The game is no longer marketed towards you, so OF COURSE you feel like its not appealing towards you. Its NOT MEANT TO.
"My friends are quitting"
Simple. A cumulation of the previous factors contribute to this. More people leaving is not a direct linear relation, its a exponential change. Players network with each other. Losing players damages their network, allowing for more players to escape.
yes yes there are many more, but then again I am not omniscient. I am merely hitting up the more common ones.
So whats appealing about specifically Vanguard?
Well, from my observations, one of the reason why Vanguard is so appealing is that it was new when Yugioh was throwing off their players.
It was a matter of good timing. People want to quit a card game, yet cant throw off their social support represented by the other card gamers. They start Vanguard, which is new, and they can shape to their desire.
"They want to jump off one train, and LOOK! THERES ANOTHER TRAIN! I like trains, we should ride that train!"
Also, from first observations, Vanguard seems like its doing everything right that Yugioh isnt.
I use the term "Seems like" because its only after youve been playing for a while that the problems arent really solved.
All Clans are created equal.
From a person whoes been playing a game where archetypes are anything BUT equal, its very appealing. To be able to use and win with anything they want to play. Wow.
Thats because Yugioh has the bad reputation of having the top deck use obscure cards that become worth 50+ USD each. Both by Konami and by players.
Vanguard curbs this slightly. The value of cards usually doesnt go over 20, and rarely, 30(American markets seem expensive for some reason)
There are no "Staples"
Because even the most seasoned of deckbuilders(such as myself. Thanks for your applause) get tired of pulling up a template of staples then building around it.
You can play what you want and win!
And because in Yugioh, you most certainly can not.
The Art is pretty
I actually have no counter-argument for this. In all the games I have ever seen, Vanguard has what I feel is the best art and Design.
Because of this, it appeals a lot to a lot of collectors. Its true.
As for game play, Yugioh and Vanguard are vastly different.
Theyre no way similar.
Saying you prefer one to the other is like saying "Oh I've liked pears for 10 years now, but now that I have tasted Apples, I like apples better than anything in the world!"
And these are some of the more common reasons why people choose to jump to Vanguard.
But what about the reality?
What has someone who has come from beyond the brink have to say about the reasons why people are jumping to Vanguard?
Is the reasons for moving to Vanguard really all that sound?