Grave = Zorga – Diving deeper into the abyss

While I’m not usually the type to dive into Granblue. Its spiritual successor, Zorga, is an interesting unit to study, especially since it’s at the forefront of Alchemagic. As part of the Festival Collection, Zorga has also evolved, bringing us a whole new Grade 3 unit, which many claim has completely replaced his original form. Do you really think this is the case? If so, why? Let’s analyze the situation and decide for ourselves.

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Already, just from the start, it has a brand new skill to itself. A simple one at that, if you perform Alchemagic you gain CONT to give all units called the front row +5000. A simple skill, but a much appreciated one at that as this is costless and ties straight to your Alchemagic, it will always be active if your deck is running smoothly. A smaller thing to note is that it is a CONT skill, and will give every unit on a front-row that power, no matter when in the turn it is called. This allows plays to be made a lot more freely and even future proofs themselves if we ever get more ways to call as this will benefit battle phase calls too.

It basically trades the ability to revive a rearguard for CB1 for the free power, compared to the original Zorga. Despite being better for pushing games, you can only recall so many rearguards per turn, which is a problem when your Roaming Prison Dragons aren’t quite finding their way home

Not to mention, the main phase call is sometimes used to Revive key units like for example Hendrina to accelerate your milling for Nectar of Sensation focused builds. In those situations, Grave=Zorga is more or less forced to just “top” draw its units.

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Now let’s compare their Alchemic skills, and this is where I feel, Grave=Zorga makes a huge leap over its previous iteration. The base Zorga, Alchemagic was very simplistic, cast a Normal Order from your hand then choose, another normal order in the drop zone and Alchemagic them. Not much to say about that, but here I want to highlight a weakness of its Alchemagic.

Zorga players probably know how frustrating it is to start a turn without any Normal orders in hand. You find yourself unable to make a play or maybe you don’t have the specific order you need for your big play. Grave Zorga’s skill can be used in these situations. You gain the same skill that Zorga has with the Alchemagic skill after adding any order card from the drop zone to your hand after a soulblast and a discard from your hand.

This alone opens up, a lot more consistency, as it pretty much turns your drop zone into a “second” hand and addresses both issues that I brought up with a Normal Zorga’s Alchemagic, of course as long as they are in the drop zone already.

Something to note is that you do not have to cast the normal order you added to hand if you want to use it for a cost or save it for the next turn. Secondly, the card you discarded for its cost, meets the timing and can be added back to the hand if it was an order and is also a viable target to revive later.

So while it does cost a soulblast, I think the consistency its adds will definitely be much appreciated. In this aspect, Grave=Zorga is the clear winner.

So isnt it clear from that alone?

Well yea, it seems so right? Grave=Zorga definitely seems to be the more consistent as it’s less prone to bricking and has that constant power to make up for the lack of calls from itself. Alas, there is still 1 more factor that we have to consider, that is the Alchemagic itself.

What orders are we aiming to combine for the strongest results? Remember as we transit to Grave Zorga, we will lose synergy and even access to some cards that can be seen as core to Zorga previously, and it all begins with that soul blast cost.

At first, you might be thinking, is it not just one soul blast what’s the big deal? Well yes, it is 1, but that 1 soul every turn is now competing with all the order cards that use soul blast. Also “Rancor Chain”, Zorga’s themed rideline uses a soul. Namely Spiritual Body Condensation, a very acclaimed order card that all of Stoichea can use, The soul cost also competes with other orders like “Regurgitation of the Underworld” which is used as techs in a Zorga deck.

Normally soul isn’t quite the issue, as we can always revive “Inheritance Maiden, Hendrina” in the main phase, but now that Grave=Zorga can not, these plays are not quite as consistent. This also affects plays that use “Shadowcloak” to recycle cards and also “Rogue Headhunter” which is used to reduce counterblast.

Not to mention we also can no longer use the main order that we Zorga uses to finish games . “Grief , Despair and Rejection” (GDR). Which will significantly affect the Highs we can reach with the deck as it is still a 30000 boost to the field.

Before we carry on , I better introduce a card

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Grave=Zorga did not debut alone, “Clouded Miasma” joined it. For a counterblast 1, Grave=Zorga revives any G3 or less and gives your vanguard Grave=Zorga’s CONT skill, which stacks on top of each other. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a great alternative to Grief Despair Rejection for Grave=Zorga, as it compensates for the power loss. It’s an intentional design, I think. Of course, it is not restricted and can be combined with GDR if we use Set 01 Zorga to create a really strong finish.

Now that I’ve presented both sides, which is better? To me, that really depends on how we intend to build the deck.

Set 01 Zorga is a lot more flexible with the plays it can go for with its added revive and has access to GDR, which can make even a mediocre field hit hard. Using this Zorga allows you to explore ideas like Hypermiling , where you mill most of your deck or even hybrid builds.

In comparison with Grave=Zorga, you will narrow down your options but you trade that flexibility to be able to execute its gameplay consistently and effectively. Effectively streamlining your deck’s strategy.

Simply put it , while it is possible to just change the Grade 3 , I believe building while adopting the right mindset to make use of their respective strengths is going to be way forward.

Building Grave=Zorga

For this article, we will be focusing on introducing Grave=Zorga and giving some tips on how to build for it fresh from the Festival Collection. Firstly our other cards, as I’ve addressed before. The orders we use are going to be a little different at least. Of course, Clouded Miasma is usually your main order and you can consider combining it with Tearful Malice” ( Note its best to use Malice from the hand, as it can be used to clear your board ), “Nectar of Sensation” and especially “Gather Upon Me, Ye Wandering Souls”.

The order card did see some Light play with when Set 04 was first released, but I think it’s especially strong now that Grave=Zorga can play off the drop zone entirely for its Alchemagic. Thus its cost becomes less of a hassle. The extra drives every turn creates a constant flow of cards you see and also help to push for game, which helps the deck run smoothly, and it’s one I recommend.

Other order cards that are still effective are “Wild Intelligence” and In an Ideal Far Away”.

Recommended Core Cards

  • Roaming Prison Dragon
  • Shadowcloak
  • Rogue Headhunter

Unit-wise, Roaming Prison is still going to be your main win condition as that constant critical on rearguard gives Zorga pressure not many decks in the format can put out as early as Turn 3. The usual bunch, besides Hendrina are still going to be strong choices but I do want to highlight a few interesting cards friends of mine, brought up.

Sleeve Tugging Belle, when played can send all your bound order cards for a power boost and in context with Grave=Zorga, resets your drop zone for Alchemagic plays. Actiosticky can be used as another G1 booster/draw engine while also retiring your Roaming Prisons before Alchemagic.

Radylina , which can be used for early game aggro. Something Zorga does not typically have. Momoke is also useful to have, as it too can retire your Roaming Prisons for no counterblast every turn, all while powering itself up. Do note that their Glitter effects do not activate in Zorga unless you are on a part of the Rorowa rideline. So no back row attack or freely gaining power.

List of recommended Alchemagic Plays in that order, mostly just a description to get you started

  • Gather Upon Me + Clouded Miasma – Stable Push
  • Tearing Malice + Clouded Miasma – Resets Roaming + Power
  • Tearing Malice + Gather Upon Me – When you’re low on resource and need to reset Roaming
  • Clouded Miasma + Nectar – Game Ender

Of course , the options are really limitless and the number of options will continue to grow.

A Typical Grave=Zorga End Game
A rather simple example of what Grave Zorga aims to achieve in a game , generally have this is mind when playing throughout the game and try to play towards it.

Sample Deck Builds
A “traditional zorga styled deck” , I recommend starting with this, and playing around with what orders you want as it should get you familiar with how the deck plays

An Alternate Build that aims to rush hard to end games as fast as possible, use Radylina for early game to easily shift the early game momentum to your favor.

Apart from these, there is some list that even experiments with using the Rorowa Rideline for a strong early game with its Token Rush and more consistent boards. It isn’t without its flaws however as you do sacrifice consistency for your Alchemagic Plays. You can check on AegisMK2 profile on it here to see his take on the build. There is definitely potential here.

EXTRA:

A sample Zorga list ( Non Grave)

A version based of some of the Zorga list that has topped in some japanese shops even after grave’s release

In the End

That brings me to the end of my investigation on Grave=Zorga. To conclude, both Zorga’s will always have a slight edge over the other as while they are very similar, they do offer different ways to build, and it is definitely possible to be successful with either. Of course, future support can easily push it in favor of one over the other. If we get battle phase superior calls, Grave=Zorga will probably be preferred.

Now that Clouded Miasma has been introduced and some of the newer Stoichea staples are synergizing with the older support, Zorga seems in a strong position. I would definitely consider investing time in this deck, since it has the potential to shake things up as we move into our official second-year D series.

As it stands, I’m personally leaning more to Grave=Zorga as stability is something I really prioritize when choosing a deck. Still, I’ll leave the ball in your court to make your own call. I for one, am really interested in how the future of this ride-line will go.

That will be all from me from now, till next time!


Cipher

  • Special Thanks to CommanderJaime, Intex, zellious and AegisMK2 for looking through some parts of it with me. Its comforting knowing there’s help!

Last Updated 18/6/2022 fixed decklog

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