Today we have a Cardfighter Spotlight! We will be having the opportunity to interview the Gravidia player that accomplished Top 8 in the Bushiroad Rumble Online (BRO) 2021 NA for the Standard format! His name is Maxime Solemn (aka Solemn Vanguard) and is from Belgium! Let’s get right into the interview!
Jaime: First off, congratulations to Maxime Solemn!
Blau: Congratulations on your win! Today, Jaime and I will be doing an interview with you to learn more about your run during the North America/Latin America Bushiroad Rumble Online.
Jaime: Shall we begin, amigo?
Jaime: Also, welcome back to a 3rd interview! I’ll link your prior interview here so readers can also get a chance to read your prior success and even where you came from. So without further ado, let’s start!
During your preparation, what are some things that you mainly focused on? Certain matchups, deck builds, strategies, etc.
Solemn: Bruce and Loronelol were the obvious major contenders. At first, I was simply going to play one of those two because it was unlikely Standard wasn’t totally solved yet. Luckily, Kai (WCC) ended up telling me about Gravidia World and thus I swapped from trying to play the known “best decks” to beating them.
Blau: What made you pick Gravidia and why the hybrid build of Gravidia/Shadow Token instead of a pure Build?
Solemn: Gravidia World has the pros of the world engine to have a solid rush whilst having the grind from Gravidia. This solid rush gives it a great Bruce and Loro matchup, which are the 2 most played decks.
Blau: Great, what was your setup plan early game since you are not doing Gravidia ride line?
Solemn: I’d mulligan anything that’s not a persona ride or a piece to call on turn 2. The ideal setup is Scissors bar boosted by an 8k with a shadow token on the other side boosting a Gravidia Stanner. Those numbers are 15k VG swing, 23k RG swing, 25k rg swing. It’s super high pressure from the second turn, followed up by drawing from Gravidia so you didn’t end up minus’ing much from the commitment. Pure Gravidia also relies more on the meteors, which are just a bunch of bricks.
Blau: Could you explain the reasoning for using the promo Flash Scissors Monster, Scissors Bar instead of using more of Gravidia’s G2s?
Solemn: Scissors bar is 15k from turn 2, unlike Stanner/Barringer who usually only reach 15k on turn 3 or 4. This means your turn 2 gets shut down by a defensive trigger (18k when you have Stanner boosted by an 8k) or when going first doesn’t get over 15k shield (23k on their 8k with Scissors bar) or by itself gets guarded by a 5k (10k on their 8k or 10k) whilst 15k Scissors requires 15k shield because almost no deck has 10k shields right now.
Blau: Did you have a plan when facing a mirror or Bruce and is it reflected in the card choices?
Solemn: The plan vs Bruce is to just bash bash bash. It’s a turn 4 deck that you can out-tempo pretty reliably. They need to heal a couple times to not get out-tempo’d.
The plan in the mirror mostly goes down to having persona rides and going first. You can also deck them out depending on how they play. I also run Thumborino which allows me to get value out of my shadow army token before they get to retire it. I assumed I wouldn’t play mirrors because the deck wasn’t very known though.
Jaime: Thank you Blau. Now, during your games, which decks/clans did you face?
Solemn: I don’t remember all of them. I recall Baro, Clarissa, Bruce, Loro, Nirvana, Orfist…
Jaime: Haha no worries. Was there a game you would like to highlight? Like your toughest matchup, best game, break or deal moments, etc.
Solemn: Three of my games were flipped by Overtriggers. I won by OTing at 6 vs a Baro player, I lost because the world champion André Lee OTd out of my lethal swing and I won in top16 by checking my OT offensively. Pretty lame that those are the break or deal moments to highlight but I don’t really remember other ones. Like last time, BRO NA was late into the night for me so it’s a bit of a blur. (I went to bed around 5AM that day)
Jaime: Wow, crazy how the OTs were coming up. During your games, what is something that you appreciated about your deck from the preparation you’ve done? The strategy of it, consistency, power, plays, etc.
Solemn: My grade 2 lineup, Thumborino, and my crit lineup were all things that were very different from the other players and it made a massive difference. The grade 2 lineup made it so I could constantly rush hard. The Thumborino made it so I could rush the Baro player in top16 very well whilst not letting the shadow army token go to waste. The 5k trigger over the effect trigger allowed me to boost my Vanguard from turn 1 going second, which saved a lot of games as well.
Jaime: How many rounds were in the tournament? How was your record throughout?
Solemn: It was 9 rounds. I went 7-2, made top 16, then won that match and then lost in top 8.
Jaime: Wow, they had a Top 16! How was your last round?
Solemn: Organization-wise that was a mess. The judges had told us we could start playing, so we did. We were already into the game, I had a godly hand, my opponent had soul charged their overtrigger and then suddenly the judges go “oh yeah, reset the game”. I asked why and they said the stream had messed something up. The thing is; we weren’t on stream at all. I asked if we were going to be and that that’s why, but they said no. So we were forced to shuffle up and start over for no reason at all.
I then proceeded to draw garbage and gott critted hard before the game had even properly started. That reset had no reason to be a thing and potentially lost me the game.
Blau: Ouch! Were there any changes post-tournament you would have made to the deck?
Solemn: Nope. It felt perfect to me.
Jaime: Awesome! Would you like to do any shout-outs to people that you know and/or have helped you along your journey?
Solemn: Shoutouts to the entire team WCC for the testing and support, 50Cards for helping me bling out my Gravidia deck and my locals friends from Hermelijn in Aalst, Belgium.
Jaime: That’s all great stuff! I’m sure your friends are happy and excited for your accomplishment! Just one more question and we’ll be done amigo.
Blau: While preparing, did you use/see any social media or online resources to help you solidify your build? Such as blogs, YouTube videos/channels, Facebook, Reddit, etc. If any, what were they?
Solemn: For Standard, I didn’t feel like there would be much fancy knowledge I could potentially derive about the format online. Beyond the hint from Kai, I figured out almost everything just testing and discussing with teammates and friends.
Jaime: Awesome! Thank you for sharing that as well, very much appreciated. Thanks again for joining me in this interview! I wish you the best and hope to see more from you in the metagame!
Solemn: Thanks for having me!
Blau: Thanks for having me, Commander.
Jaime: Till next time amigos!
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this interview! I just wanted to highlight some takeaways that can help players out!
Not Your Typical Build
Solemn mentioned, “My grade 2 lineup, Thumborino, and my crit lineup were all things that were very different from the other players and it made a massive difference.“
Solemn had made some differences from the typical Gravidia build and it benefited him. Sometimes as players, we saw a lot of common cards being played that we don’t even consider trying out new cards or different ones.
There are benefits in doing so such as surprising your opponent and also enabling your deck some plays that it wasn’t typically able to do.
Thanks again for reading this Cardfighter Spotlight article! It’s great to see an awesome Cardfighter like Solemn achieving Top 8! Thanks again to Maxime Solemn for joining us today as well! Till next time amigos!
Also, feel free to check out his awesome deck profile video!
Solemn’s Social Media:
Blau’s Social Media:
Commander Jaime’s Social Media: