Hello Mysidians, welcome to this week’s article. Today I am going to talk about the many options available to players in a Mono Wind Deck. The tricky part about Mono Wind is that there are many fantastic backups that do not remove themselves, so it is impossible to fit them all in one list. Once you have played 5 backups that cannot be removed, any further backups you draw will just be CP. Since Mono Wind is very efficient, you will realistically be able to break and play more backups throughout your matches, so having breakable backups is a must. Not to mention Wind has some fantastic breakable backups in the form of Archer and White Mage.
Before we breakdown the different options available to you, lets take a look at Mono Wind as a deck, and see why it is so popular to play right now. Below I have copied my personal Mono Wind deck list. Keep in mind I do not own a third Y’shtola or Diabolos, otherwise I would be running them.
Deck name: Mono Wind Activate!
The purpose of this deck is to efficiently build up backups and flood the board with forwards. Many activation effects allow you to reuse CP, meaning cards can be played “for free”. Y’shtola allows you to play aggressively and build your forwards without fear of board clears like Shantotto. The deck also uses the Crystal Chronicles package featuring Chelinka, Yuri, and Alhanalem. Chelinka and Alhanalem synergize with smaller forwards to trade up, as well as, with Barbariccia and Diabolos to ping off forwards with reduced power. Alhanalem can deal with small forwards easily and can ping for 3000 damage every time he is activated if Chelinka is in play. Yuri allows you to generate infinite value if he is not dealt with immediately. As this is a mono colour deck, Yuri always has backups to use his ability one to two times per turn. If you are able to use Chelinka’s party attack ability with Yuri, you have already won.
Core cards/ Combos:
Core Combo #1: Chelinka + Barbariccia or Diabolos
Easy peasy, just drop a Barbariccia or cast a Diabolos and follow it up with a Chelinka. Due to her own ability of increasing a Category CC character’s damage by 1k, she will deal 2k damage to all opposing forwards on entry. This means you can even kill a forward that is has a 1k boost from a backup like Enna Kros. Killing an opponent’s forwards while potentially playing two of your own is a strong play, just be careful not to overextend.
Core Combo #2: Bartz/Vata/Aerith Quick Development, protect with Y’shtola
Ideally when playing this deck, you can quickly drop 3 backups to start the game. This will allow you to tap 3 backups to play an Aerith, who will in turn activate those three backups you dulled to pay for her. Similarly, the same effect can come when you play Vata off of four backups, or when you play Bartz off of 5 backups. Keep in mind if you cast Diabolos off of 5 backups and choose to activate all backups, it is as if you cast it for free. If you do use some CP from your hand for these cards, then you can use a dull ability on a backup, such as Alhanalem, multiple times. When playing Mono Wind, you will find you can slam a lot of forwards down quickly, since the aforementioned forwards are played “for free”. Be careful not to overextend without a Y’shtola, or an opponent’s board wipe can ruin your day.
Core Combo #3: Yuri and any activation.
Possibly the most potent ability in the deck, Yuri can use active backups to use his many abilities. The ideal set up is to have 5 active backups when he is played, meaning you discarded two cards from hand to play him. Having a full backup roster means you can use his ability twice on the stack if your opponent tries anything. This allows to get value even if they remove your Yuri. Furthermore, with any activation abilities (Aerith, Bartz, Vata, Zu, Cecil, Leyak etc) you can potentially use Yuri’s abilities more than twice a turn. In case the cards in your hand are premium, you can always discard one card from hand and tap two CP to play Yuri, leaving you with 1 ability charge to use. Considering if Yuri is left alone you will likely win the game from his continuous advantage, Yuri will be subject to a lot of removal. This will allow your other forwards safety but be sure to play Yuri with Y’shtola if you can.
Tip: If you do plan to use Yuri’s dull and freeze ability, use it on your opponents turn if possible, that way they have to wait longer to reach their activate phase.
Alright let’s get on to the many variations for Mono Wind. For this article, I am going to work under the assumption that you are playing the Yuri, Chelinka, and Alhanalem FFCC package in your Mono Wind deck. If so, then you are likely also running Aleria to search for Yuri or Chelinka, and for a nice EX-Burst.
Now if you are running in-between 17-18 backups, you couldn’t possibly fit these all in your deck. Keep in mind some of these backups, you will likely want more than one copy, especially those with specials [Moogle (XI), Aerith]. In terms of breakable backups, the most common seem to be Archer and White Mage due to their power in the meta. Thief, Oracle, and Cactuar Conductor could be interesting techs but are hard to find space for.
I have tested every package below in Mono Wind, and now settled on my personal preference. However, I do want to try playing the Kan-E-Senna package again.
Package One: Nono Activation Tech
Nono is an awesome card and can work wonders with Alhanalem. With a Yuri and/or Chelinka on board, every time one of your forwards attacks, you can activate Alhanalem and ping a forward, or your opponents entire board. With Chelinka in play, this works out to 3k a ping. With only two attacks, you can deal 9k to a forward. You will likely want to run at least 2 Nono’s in your deck, although you will see in the deck below that 3 were used.
An example of this deck is the list that Jason Zhe (GrandJason) brought to Worlds, you can check out his list here, and his YouTube channel here!
Package Two: Maria Power Up
While listening to the Crystal Tower Podcast (episode here), I heard Anthony Achin talk about the difference Maria made in Mono Wind. It made Zidane strong against Glasya Labosa and Ramuh and made it easier for him to swing in unthreatened. Overall it makes the deck quite strong, as Bartz and Kan-E-Senna would reach 10k and Chelinka (damages for 9k), Yuri, and Vata all reach 9k.
You can see Anthony Achin's Winter Cup Mono Wind list here.
Package Three: Kan-E-Senna and Friends (Kan-you fit this in your deck?!)
This package is certainly alluring. Can you imagine running 6 copies of Bartz (minus the EX-Burst on three of them). Having a strong forward that can’t be targeted by abilities is amazing. This package also lets you search for a backup as A-Ruhn-Senna can search for his sister. Starting with him in hand allows you to set up your backups quickly and consistently. However, you need to sacrifice other backup slots to run the full package. Anthony also used this package in his Winter Cup list. As you can see on his list, he did not run any Aeriths and only had one breakable backup in the form of Archer. This worked out for him for the most part though, as he came in second place in very large tournament.
Package Four: Moogle (XI) Searching for all the Answers.
The next tech choice I am going to talk about today is Moogle (XI). This card is bananas. You can slam it down early, and every time you draw another one you can trade it for any card in your deck. Haven’t drawn your Alhanalem yet? No problem just search it up. Need a Y’shtola to protect your board? Don’t even worry about it, Moogle (XI) is going to help you out, free of charge, he’s just that kind of guy.
You can check out Hunter Nance’s Worlds list here. He runs the Moogle (XI) set, as well as Maria in his Mono Wind. He has no need for Nono, as he runs Oracle and Leyak to help with activation.
Possible Jank: I like running the forward Moogle in my Mono Wind deck, if you also run Moogle (XI) and Nono then you can consider running Choco/Mog as an easy searcher and EX-Burst draw. Might be too ambitious to give a slot to Choco/Mog though.
One Last Option: Echo Ex-Burst
Another backup you may see many Mono Wind decks running is the 4 CP Echo. This backup is great to play early, as it can fix your hand if you didn’t draw well. Generally, you will play it to look at the top card of your deck, usually searching for another backup to play. Later on in the match, Echo is a killer Ex-Burst as you can draw a card, or activate a forward or backup for combat.
Fun Fact: In Final Fantasy Mobius, Echo will often randomly help out with a heal or a buff during combat, similar to how she can pop in as an Ex-Burst in FFTCG.
That about wraps it up, thanks for reading! Let me know what you favourite Mono Wind variation is. Did I miss any other common techs? See you next time!
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Alex is a FFTCG player from Vancouver, Canada. His favourite Final Fantasy is IV and his favourite Elements are Earth and Ice, although he has a soft spot for fire.