Dragonstrike Infernus, the new set for Kaijudo, is rapidly approaching. For fans of dragons, that’s good news. The set includes dragons for each of the five civilizations, as well as numerous support cards that make playing a dragon deck a heck of a lot easier. To whet your appetite, Wizards has released the Dragon Master Collection Kit. This kit comes with a box to store decks in, a booklet to store twenty of your best cards, four boosters from the Rise of the Duel Masters set, and most importantly, two exclusive dragons that will fit nicely with any dragons you get from the upcoming set.
First up, let’s take a look at the box itself. While it’s painted to look like wood and metal, it’s actually made of cardboard. It’s not the strongest stuff, but it’s more than sturdy enough to hold your cards without worry. It also features some nifty dragon-themed art on the sides. There’s a circle of dragons that represent each civilization. The inside of the box slides out and that’s where there are two compartments designed to hold about one hundred and twenty sleeved cards. That’s about three decks, if you use the standard size. If you don’t use sleeves, you can fit many more cards, but the cards will be able to move side to side quite a bit. I’d suggest some sort of padding. I used some of the playmats/rulebooks that come with each constructed deck. The art on the inner compartment is based on the two cards that come with the set, and is pretty neat to look at. My only real concern with the box is that it isn’t going to hold up very well to heavy use. The corners on mine became a little banged up pretty much right out of the gate. Still, a careful gamer could get some use out of this thing. It’s certainly better to look at that the usual white cardboard boxes people use for cards.
Next let’s take a look at the booklet. It is actually two pieces of tough plastic that hold together a string of sleeves. There are ten sleeves, but you can fit twenty cards if you go front and back. I really don’t like this thing. For starters, it will bend quite easily, even when full, which makes putting it in your pocket a bad idea. However, it does fit snugly in the deck box. If you use it that way, you might want to avoid putting unprotected cards in with it, as the velcro straps that hold the thing together are bulky and could cause some damage. A better design for the booklet would have had it open like a book rather than fold out like a chain of snowflakes you use as Christmas decorations. It would be sturdier, and easier to browse through. I do suppose that it could be fun to hold one side and the let the whole thing fall open if you’re going for dramatic effect. The only thing I like about the booklet is that it features the same nifty art as on the box. It looks nice enough, even if it has limited practical uses.
Of course, real fans of the game aren’t really after the box or the booklet. The biggest draw for them are the two new cards. Let’s take a look at them.
These are both big time dragons that add a lot of value to any dragon deck. While they may not have much power compared to their cost, they more than make up for it with their special abilities. Necrodragon can break can break one shield for each dragon you have on the field when you play it. Played right, you can completely wipe out your opponent’s shields and make the killing blow on that turn! Hammer Dragon isn’t as quick about ending your opponent, but it has it’s own special move. Whenever it attacks, you can flip over the top card of your deck. If it’s a non-evolution dragon, you can put it right on the field. Anything else goes to the bottom of your deck. This can get you a free powerhouse every time you attack! Best of all, using this card, you could potentially summon a Necrodragon, allowing you to use its devastating ability before you could actually play it! For players, the best news about these cards is that there are three of each with the box, a full set! You won’t need to buy multiple copies of the kit and/or look around to find extra copies. That’s just a cool move by Wizards. The downside to these cards is that they don’t work well at all without a deck full of dragons to support. They’re too expensive for their power. Sure, they both have double breaker, but so do most high level creatures. Still, these cards are pretty nice and more than worth it for dragon fans.
I could easily end this review now, but talking about Kaijudo is fun. As a bonus, let’s discuss a few of the interesting cards I got from the four booster packs that came with the set. These boosters are from the Rise of the Duel Masters set, which is the core set. They significantly add to the value of the kit. Since packs are around three dollars, you’re getting twelve dollars worth of cards. The kit is twenty dollars at retail, meaning you’re really spending about eight bucks for the box, the booklet, and the dragons. Not a bad deal at all.
Up first I found a couple copies of Raging Goliant. These suckers don’t offer the best power value for the price, but that’s OK. They boost the attack level of fellow beast kin by two thousand. If you’re playing a nature deck that has a lot of beast kin, this card could certainly help you maintain power advantage. A great trick is to play Razorhide on turn three, attack with him on turn four, and play Goliant on turn five. Your Razorhide can continue attacking and putting cards in your mana zone, and it will be a heck of a lot safer with that power boost.
Next is Gorgeon, Shadow of Gluttony. At first glance, this card may not look like much, but it represents an attitude that I like very much. For three mana, you get a powerful creature with five thousand attack. The kicker is that once it wins a battle, it gets banished. It’s kind of like a reverse slayer. Anyways, this card can be great for clearing out a tough blocker early on, clearing out the way for your other creatures. You can also attack shields with it, leaving it open on your opponent’s turn. They’ll have to choose whether or not to sacrifice a creature in order to sate its appetite. In Magic, I’ve always like black cards that offer you power for cheap, but at a price. This card represents that idea quite well.
This is the crown jewel of the cards I got from those boosters. Hovercraft Glu-urrgle is one of the best cards in the game as far as I’m concerned, and a great card in any deck that uses the water civilization. Any time you lose a creature in battle, it goes to your hand instead of the discard pile. You can then play that creature again, or use it as mana to play something even bigger. If the creature in question has a useful effect when it comes into play, all the better! It could be something as simple as replaying Hydro Spy to draw another card, or it can be a replaying blockers so you always have a line of defense. The drawback is that Glu-urrgle only has a thousand attack points, which makes in vulnerable to just about every removal spell out there. Still, it’s a heck of a card and one that will definitely go in my water deck.
The bottom line for this kit is that fans shouldn’t hesitate to pick it up. It’s got four booster to sweeten the deal, and a full set of two exclusive dragon cards. The box is nifty and great for carrying around decks. Even if I don’t like the booklet, I’m sure that some other people may like it. Either way, this is not a bad deal for twenty bucks. It’s It’s definitely worth a look.