Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

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bighobbit
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Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by bighobbit » Wed May 11, 2011 12:11 pm

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Contents
- Introduction
- So how do you play Cloudians?
- Hail, Caesar!: The Key Clouds
- The Darkened Sky: Supporting Clouds
- Take Shelter!: Non-Cloud Support
- Thunderstruck: Spells & Traps
- Rain Dance: Additional Tech
- Summary & Conclusion
- Cumuloregalis: Sample Decklists

Introduction
Cloudians, one of the many Archetypes spawned during the GX era - and in my opinion, one of the most underrated.
Despite their fragile appearances, these misty monsters have the potential to cause extreme headaches for any opponent of the duelist skilled enough to wield them. Here, I will delve into how to play this archetype, so that you may be able to as well.


So, how do you play Cloudians?
To the untrained eye, a Cloudian looks very weak. His ATK points are usually never over 1500, he'll be lucky if his DEF ever exceeds 0, and - this is the cruncher - if the Cloudian is ever in face-up Defence Position, he combusts.

A Cloudian's true strength is measured in Fog Counters. These Counters are generated by Cloudians and can by manipulated by them for various means, from Summoning to drawing to destruction. The key to victory lies with these Fog Counters, so you need to know how to maximise them, and how to utilise them.

For Smoke Ball Synchro variants, you use your Fog Counters to constantly Summon and re-Summon Smoke Balls to use as Synchro Material (ah, the subtleties of deck-naming...) For more Classic builds, your Fog Counters are going to be your main means of maintaing your card advantage - by getting rid of your opponent's cards. As such, you need means of generating lots of them quickly. This is where the Key Cloudians come in.

Hail, Caesar!: The Key Clouds
[spoiler]Of all the Clouds in the Archetype, there are 3 that no Cloudian Deck should leave the atmosphere without.
Each one of these shares some common traits:
- when Normal Summoned, they gain Fog Counters equal to the number of face-up Cloudians on the field. Therefore, it follows that the more Cloudians you Normal Summon, the more Fog Counters you will have, and the more havoc you can wreck.
- none of their effects are bound by the 'once per turn' rule, allowing for mass destruction.
In a Cloudian Deck, you should run 2-3 of each of the following:

1.Cloudian - Cirrostratus
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At a cost of 2 Fog Counters, destroy 1 monster your opponent controls. Handy for taking out bullies like Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon.

2.Cloudian - Acid Cloud
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For 2 Fog Counters, destroy 1 Spell/Trap. Because sometimes Heavy Storm and MST at 3 isn't overkill enough..

3.Cloudian - Altus
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For 3 Counters, force a random discard. While it seems expensive, bear in mind he can take his cost from any Monster with a Counter on it, including your opponent's.

In a Classic Cloudian deck, these 3 Clouds will make the core of your deck, as such you should be trying to make the most of each of them in your path to victory.[/spoiler]

The Darkened Sky: Supporting Clouds
[spoiler]Of course, you can't run a deck with just 9 Monsters, so let's now look at some of the other Cloudians that could support you.

Cloudian - Storm Dragon
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One of the most useful support cards. The extra Counter he grants can 'double' the effects of any one Cloudian. Plus he can be easily Summoned simply by switching a Cloudian into Defence Position.
Run 2-3 in any build.

Cloudian - Turbulence & Cloudian - Smoke Ball
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In a Classic build, Turbulence has limited use. Granted, he can use his Counters to bring out Smoke Balls and up the number of Cloudians on your field for Fog Counters or Tributes, but nine times out of ten you'd want an Acid Cloud to bust that Trap.
For Synchro builds however, these two are your bread and butter Clouds, and you want to be able to bring them out at every available opportunity - Smoke Ball in particular, so that you can revive Fishborg Blaster.
Run 0 in Classic builds, 2-3 of both in Synchro builds.

Cloudian - Poison Cloud
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In every Archetype there's always that one card that makes you think '...what were you smoking, Konami?' Not only does Poison Cloud contribute zip to Fog Counter production/manipulation, his effect requires him to battle - NEVER a good idea for an Archetype that needs to be constantly in Attack Position.
Run 0.

Cloudian - Sheep Cloud
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When destroyed in battle, it leaves behind 2 'Cloudian Tokens' - good way to boost field presence for Tributes, or Fog Counter production. It does, however, have to be in battle.
Run 0-1.

Cloudian - Ghost Fog
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In a game currently dominated by high level Fusions and Synchros, this guy's effect seems pretty good. However, when Exceeds are released he'll be next to useless. Plus, like the two before him, he does squat if he doesn't battle.
Run 0.

Cloudian Nimbusman & Cloudian - Eye of the Typhoon
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You're going to need one of these beatsticks to run over Stardust etc - do NOT run both, or you'll be in some trouble. My personal preference lies with Nimbusman, being remarkably easier to Summon and potentially able to go toe-to-toe with any of the Aesir.
Run 1-2 of either one.[/spoiler]

Take Shelter!: Non-Cloud Support

[spoiler]Whilst the Cloudians take centre stage, the deck really could not run without these guys waiting in the wings.

Archlord Kristya
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Arguably the best card in the Deck. Awesome stats, Cloudian retrieval, and built-in Oppression? Cloudians have excellent grave control, so you should have no excuse not to run this.
Run 2.

Fishborg Blaster
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The driving force behind Smoke Ball Synchro. Can sync with Smoke Ball for Formula Synchron, or any other Level 4 Cloudian for Hyper Librarian. Using him in cojunction with Turbulence, Smoke Ball and Storm Dragon, it's fairly simple to synch into T.G. Halberd Blaster within a single turn.
Run 3 in Smoke Ball Synchro.

Zeradius, the Herald of Heaven
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If you're running The Sanctuary in the Sky to give you Clouds a little backbone, Zeradius is needed as well. Not only can he search the Field Spell, if duty calls he can double as an emergency beatstick.
Run 3 if you run Sanctuary.

Mother Grizzly
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If destroyed in battle can search any Cloudian with 1500 ATK or less - that's ANY Cloudian other than Eye of the Typhoon. The Cloudian Summoned won't get any Fog Counters, so it's best to use Mother as an emergency means of getting out Nimbusman.
Run 0-2 if you run Nimbusman.

Sangan
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Gets a Cloud to yiour hand. 'nuff said.
Run 0-1.

Tethys the Goddess of Light
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Cloudians tend to be quite slow, due to lack of Special Summoning. Tethys can fix that, as well as giving you some frontline beef.
Run 0-1.

Meklord Emperor Wisel
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Credit to Oorari for this one. Wisel (or indeed, any of the Emperors) can be easily summoned by self-popping a Cloud, and can take care of the Synchro Monsters that are really going to cause you some trouble (a certain dragon covered in star dust springs to mind). And you don't need to worry too much about nobody else attacking. What sets Wisel apart from his brethren is his Spell negation, but there's no reason not to field the others if you so please.
Run 0-2 of any one Emperor.


Exclusively for the Synchro build:
Formula Synchron & T.G. Hyper Librarian
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Fishborg's compatability with Smoke Ball makes Summoning either of these two easy as Pi. Not only that, but Summoning them gives you a huge amount of plusses, meaning you'll be able to draw into key cards such as Trunade and the like sooner for an OTK.
Run as many of each as your Extra Deck will allow.[/spoiler]

Thunderstruck: Spells & Traps
[spoiler]Since their release, Cloudians have had a plethora of dedicated Spells and Traps to support, some more helpful than others.

Cloudian Squall
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The best in Fog Counter distribution. Every Monster gets a Counter - including your opponent's Monsters! Very handy when combined with Altus or Nimbusman.
Run 2-3.

Fog Control
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Sacrifice a Cloudian to gain some more Counters. The short-term benefits are understandable, and it's useful for dumping a Cloudian for Kristya or Storm Dragon.
Run 0-2.

Diamond Dust Cyclone
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Yes, it's draw power, but 4 Fog Counters per card is a pretty steep price. Plus the ones with that many Counters are likely to be your own Monsters.
Run 0.

Lucky Cloud & Summon Cloud
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In Classic builds, run 0 of either. Lucky Cloud requires too many resources to fully utilize, and Special Summoning any Cloudian won't give you the Fog Counters you need. For Synchro, they are a bit more ueful - Summon Cloud can bring out a Smoke Ball to start Fishborg abusing, whilst it is fairly easy to bring out multiple Smoke Balls in one turn thanks to Turbulence and Storm Dragon so Lucky can replenish your hand by the turn's end.
Run 0-2 of each in Synchro builds.

Rain Storm
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Some decent Spell/Trap hate on paper, until you realise that over half your Clouds have less than 1000 ATK, let alone 2000.
Run 0-1.

Raging Cloudian
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Anytime a Cloudian switches position should be voluntary - either for Kristya or Storm Dragon. Therefore, you don't want the Cloudian to come back.
Run 0, or side 2 for Level Limit Area - B.

Natural Disaster & Updraft
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A Cloudian Burn is certainly an interesting idea, but not an ideal one. Disaster's effect, realistically, is only going to go off once or twice per turn, while Updraft's mass removal goes against the very principle of the deck.
Run 0 of either in classic builds.[/spoiler]

Rain Dance: Additional Tech
[spoiler]The Sanctuary in the Sky & Spirit Barrier
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Either of these cards will counter the Cloudian's most obvious weakness - Battle Damage. Both each have their own advantages over the other - I prefer Sanctuary due to it being easily searched, not Trap Stunned and having an extra S/T slot.
Run Sanctuary at 3 if running Zeradius.

Salvage
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Almost every Cloudian can be brought back via this card, allowing more grave control and additional Normal Summonings. Also works well in Smoke Ball Synchro as it recycles discard fodder for Fishborg.
Run 2-3.

Pot of Duality
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Cloudians need all the draw power they can get, and this card blesses them with it. Plus the classic builds aren't too affected by its drawback. Sadly it's not cheap these days, but there really is no getting around that, as Clouds are too weak to sub in Upstart.
Run 3 in classic.

Gold Sarcophagus
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More search power. Use this to get otherwise non-searchable cards, such as Kristya or Cloudian Squall.
Run 0-2.

Ultimate Offering
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Helps Fog Counter generation tremendously, but it does empty your hand fairly rapidly. Be careful not to overdo it - if your frontline gets blown up by a Torrential/Dark Hole, you may never recover.
Run 0-2.

Royal Oppression
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Kristya's best attribute. Can be a dead draw if you're maxing out on Kristya but certainly worth the deck space.
Run 0-1 in classic builds.

Spiritual Water Art - Aoi
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An alternative to Fog Control. Can be useful if you suspect a Gorz/Battle Fader/Exodia.
Run 0-2.

Starlight Road
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Lots of mass removal this format spells bad news for Cloudians. And a free Stardust is a good ally to have on your side.
Run 0-2

Kaiser Colosseum
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A little tech I thought would probably work well in Classic builds. Something to throw the opponent off guard. Keep the swarms at bay, one Cloudian at a time.
Run 0-2.[/spoiler]

Summary & Conclusion
- Fog Counters, Fog Counters, Fog Counters.
- In Classic builds, slow and steady wins the race. Remember that you don't have to attack during your turn, and that you can't be too careful when it comes to facedown cards.
- It can sometimes help to keep a running tally of how many Counters you have, so you can 'budget' what effects to use this turn.
- While Classic Clouds have a slow playing style, their decks should be fairly speedy. Search/draw cards are highly recommended - the more Clouds you can draw into, the better.

Cloudians certainly aren't the easiest deck to play - they're far slower than many more competitive decks today, and require a great deal of support to be able to work properly. However, in the right hands they can be a powerful decklist that rewards patience and skill.
If that sounds like you, or you want a new deckbuilding challenge, or just another way to crush your opponents, give Cloudians a go.

Happy Dueling! :mrgreen:
-bighobbit

Cumuloregalis: Sample Decklists
Spoiler:
Monsters (19)
Archlord Kristya x2
Cloudian - Atlus x3
Cloudian - Cirrostratus x3
Cloudian - Acid Cloud x3
Cloudian - Nimbusman x2
Cloudian - Storm Dragon x3
Zeradius Herald of Heaven x3

Spells (14)
The Sanctuary in the Sky x3
Cloudian Squall x3
Card Destruction
Gold Sarcophagus x2
Pot of Duality x2
Salvage x2
Dark Hole
Monster Reborn

Traps (6)
Mirror Force
Solemn Judgment
Dimensional Prison x2
Spiritual Water Art - Aoi x2

A Cloudian build I built earlier. The deck itself has a fair bit of speed with Zeradius, Sarc, Duality and Card Destruction, as well as a fairly high Monster Count, so I can draw into my Cloudians sooner. From there, it's all about building up Fog Counters and taking the opponent apart.
The astute among you may have noticed a lack of 'staple' cards - ie, Mystical Space Typhoon, Solemn Warning etc. I'm not saying you shouldn't run them - if you can make the room then go for it - it's just that in most cases the Clouds have got it covered. However I would side my MSTs in Clouds - the only time they really need it is for Level Limit Area B.
Spoiler:
3 Zeradias, Herald of Heaven
3 Cloudian - Altus
3 Cloudian - Cirrostratus
2 Cloudian - Storm Dragon
2 Cloudian - Acid Cloud
2 Archlord Kristya
1 Sangan
1 Malefic Stardust Dragon

3 Pot of Duality
3 The Sanctuary in the Sky
3 Cloudian Squall
2 Salvage
2 Messenger of Peace
2 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Monster Reborn
1 Dark Hole

2 Divine Punishment
2 Dimensional Prison
1 Solemn Judgment
1 Mirror Force

Another Classic build, courtesy of thePTguy!
Spoiler:
Cloudian - Smoke Ball x3
Cloudian - Turbulence x3
Cloudian - Storm Dragon x3
Cloudian - Sheep Cloud x2
Skreech x3
Fishborg Blaster x3
Swap Frog x3

3x Upstart Goblin
2x Surfacing
2x Summon Cloud
2x Salvage
2x Pot of Avarice
2x Mystical Space Typhoon
1x Dark Hole
1x Mystical Space Typhoon
1x Card Destruction

3x Royal Decree

Finally came up with a build I was happy with. Here the aim is to spam Synchroes by ditching Fishborg and reviving it via the Clouds. Extra Deck should be stocked up with Formulas and Librarians, as well as those all-powerful Level 12 Synchroes...
Last edited by bighobbit on Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:21 pm, edited 15 times in total.

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Davro
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by Davro » Wed May 11, 2011 12:32 pm

Quite interested in the Synchro part, get it done asap ;)
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by shadowdragon » Wed May 11, 2011 12:44 pm

i ran one at a group function but it seemed very defenseless and weak. granted it was against six sam but nothin really caught my eye about this puddle deck.

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by bighobbit » Wed May 11, 2011 3:38 pm

shadowdragon wrote:i ran one at a group function but it seemed very defenseless and weak. granted it was against six sam but nothin really caught my eye about this puddle deck.
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Yes, Clouds will have as hard a time against Sams as any other deck below Tier 1. If all it took was that one duel to turn you off Cloudians forever, I am very disappoint.

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by shadowdragon » Wed May 11, 2011 3:55 pm

i still have it but prefer to use my self built dragon deck for now. it still needs work but seems to stand up to the bw gb and overwhelmingly popular morph decks since adding 2 future visions. kinda p.o.s the bw players when their summon is sent outta play right away. was kinda considering soul absorption as well.

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by LewieGee » Wed May 11, 2011 3:56 pm

I like it. However, saying three of each initial Cloudian is staple is a little... weird. I rarely find myself running three copies of each but whatever.


Also, lol, I should rake out old lolcloudian decks and update them :(
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by -thePTguy » Wed May 11, 2011 5:13 pm

I like this. And I'll definitely try to build one.
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by Zeronex » Wed May 11, 2011 5:17 pm

I always wanted to build a Kikou Cloudy Monarch.dek, but somehow it just don't come out nicely so I abandoned the idea.

Thanks for reminding me. =D
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by bighobbit » Thu May 12, 2011 1:56 am

Started to update guide to include Smoke Ball Synchro.

If anyone has any Cloudian Decklists they feel they want to share, PM them to me and I'll try putting them into the guide.
(Smoke Ball Decklists in particular would be appreciated)

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by Hogyokuju » Thu May 12, 2011 1:39 pm

Seems pretty awesome

And by pretty i mean crazy. Totally forgot about Kristya

When my Junk Synchron addict is cured i definitely try this thing FOR FREAKING SURE

And no i dont find a way to include Junk Synchron here. Smokeball alone cant gave me a great reason for doing that ridiculous feat
Dark Strike Fighter should be Unbanned. Its useless/sarcasm

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by Alamo » Thu May 12, 2011 3:20 pm

Cloudian OTK was always a fun deck to play. Its pretty good too.
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by bighobbit » Thu May 12, 2011 3:27 pm

Alamo wrote:Cloudian OTK was always a fun deck to play. Its pretty good too.
From what I gather, that's essentially Smoke Ball Synchro. Which I am going to be adding in at a later date.
If you've got a decklist you want showcased, I'd be more than happy to display it if you PM me it.

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by ParadiseNigh » Fri May 13, 2011 8:07 pm

I do like this guide, as I myself am a fan of Cloudians.
Keep up the good work, bro.
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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by darkremnant13 » Sun Jun 05, 2011 12:53 pm

Tbh this is one of the best guides I have ever seen. It's creative, well-thought of, and entertaining to read. Now I'm extremely tempted to make a Cloudian deck after I finish buying the cards I need for my Nordic Deck. And omg it's so annoying seeing PoD everywhere! They are just so dang expensive!! Konami seriously need to reprint it so prices can go down:/

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Re: Raindrops keep fallin' on my head - A Guide to Cloudians

Post by ParadiseNigh » Sun Jun 05, 2011 1:17 pm

Lol yeah, there's no way in hell they're gonna reprint it.
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