Ice Barrier

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Ice Barrier
"General Gantala", "General Grunard" and "General Raiho" in the artwork of "Magic Triangle of the Ice Barrier".
Japanese
  • ひょうけっかい
  • 氷結界 (base)
  • ひょうけっかい (ruby)
  • Hyōkekkai (romanized)
French
  • Barrière de Glace
German
  • Eisbarriere
Italian
  • Barriera di Ghiaccio
Korean
  • 빙결계
  • 氷結界 (Hanja)
  • Binggyeolgye (romanized)
Portuguese
  • Barreira de Gelo
Spanish
  • Barrera de Hielo
Sets
TCG
OCG
Korean
Anime appearances
Manga appearances
Lists

"Ice Barrier" (ひょうけっかい Hyōkekkai) is an archetype consisting of WATER monsters resembling, for the most part, famous concepts, figures, warriors, and mythological beings of different Asian cultures. Their team symbol resembles a hexagonal snowflake.

They focus on stymieing the opponent's attackers with their defensive monsters and plenty of Spell/Trap Cards to compensate for their inability to maintain hand advantage. The ace monsters of this archetype are the three dragons of the Ice Barrier (namely "Brionac, Dragon of the Ice Barrier", "Gungnir, Dragon of the Ice Barrier", and "Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier"-including its retrained counterpart), and the generals of the Ice Barrier ("General Raiho of the Ice Barrier", "General Gantala of the Ice Barrier", "General Grunard of the Ice Barrier", and "General Wayne of the Ice Barrier").

Lore[edit]

The "Ice Barrier" Crest

Playing style[edit]

The "Ice Barrier" archetype consists of a large amount of Main Deck Effect Monsters, several Synchro Monsters that act as boss monsters, and some archetypal Spell/Trap support. The archetype's playstyle is roughly focused on summoning multiple different Main Deck "Ice Barrier" monsters, combining their individual protection effects to handicap the opponent, and ideally summon its Synchro boss monsters to break the opponent's board and push for game. However, the archetype had historically lacked consistency cards, lacked synergy between its card effects, had no swarming capabilities, and its individual protection effects are not strong enough to sustain the deck as the game's power level increased.

Structure Deck: Ice Barrier of the Frozen Prison, and cards added after the Structure Deck, gave the archetype some much needed support cards that adresses some of its issues with consistency and swarming.

  • "Revealer" can summon an "Ice Barrier" Tuner monster directly from the Deck, setting up the summons of the archetype's Synchro Monsters. It can also banish itself from GY to substitute for other "Ice Barrier" monsters' discard costs.
  • "Hexa Spirit" is a Tuner that can send an "Ice Barrier" monster from the Deck to the GY and modulate its own levels, enabling indirect searches via the GY, and also enables more Synchro options.
  • "General Wayne" is a Level 5 extender that can be Special Summoned from the hand if you control an "Ice Barrier" monster and your opponent controls a monster, and searches an "Ice Barrier" Spell/Trap when summoned.
  • "Speaker" can Special Summon herself from the hand if the player controls an "Ice Barrier" monster, and can banish herself from the GY to summon a Token.
  • "Zuijin" can Tribute itself to Special Summon a Level 5 or higher "Ice Barrier" monster from hand, and can revive itself in the GY (except in the turn it is sent to the GY) by decreasing a friendly WATER monster's Level by 2.
  • "Freezing Chains of the Ice Barrier" is a Continuous Spell that grants some protection to "Ice Barrier" monsters, and can revive a Level 4 or lower "Ice Barrier" monster when activated.
  • "Winds Over the Ice Barrier" can summon low-Level "Ice Barrier" monsters from the Deck by tributing "Ice Barrier" monsters the player controls, and can banish itself from GY to recover an "Ice Barrier" monster in the GY or the banish pile.

Some cards released before the Structure Deck are still useful for the archetype's strategy: "Medallion" is a monster searching Spell with no restrictions attached. "Prior" is a Special Summon extender and can Tribute itself to revive an "Ice Barrier" monster in the GY, though it restricts the player from Special Summon Level 5 or higher monsters the turn it's summoned by its own effect.

"Ice Barrier" Synchro Monsters are very strong, but were historically better used in other decks than in "Ice Barrier" due to the archetype's weakness with swarming, and the generic material requirements of these monsters.

  • "Dewloren" can return friendly face-up cards to the hand to boost its own ATK. (Prior to its functional errata in 2020/2021, this effect was a standard "once per turn" effect rather than a strict "only once per turn" effect, enabling the potential for infinite hand-returning loops in dedicated builds.) In "Ice Barrier", "Dewloren" can be used to return "Freezing Chains of the Ice Barrier" to the hand to reuse its activation effect.
  • "Gungnir" and "Brionac" can discard cards to destroy or return the opponent's cards, clearing out the opponent's board.
  • "Trishula" and its retrained "Trishula, Zero Dragon" are both powerful monsters that trigger mass banish effects upon being summoned, though they require 2+ non-Tuner monsters to be summoned and are thus harder to make.

In terms of generic support, the deck benefits from generic WATER and Aqua support, such as "Moray of Greed", "Salvage", "Surface", and "Barrier Statue of the Torrent". "Ties of the Brethren" can be used to assist in swarming "Ice Barrier" monsters with the archetype's many monsters that share Level, Attribute, and Types.

Recommended cards[edit]

Official Konami Decklists[edit]

The following Decklists may or may not contain copies of cards that exceed the maximum amount allowed by the current Forbidden & Limited List. These should not be changed, as these Decklists are copied verbatim at the time they were published.

Weaknesses[edit]

  • As "Ice Barriers" thrive on having several monsters on the field, an easy way of dealing with them is to not let them have a decent board. While cards like "Dai-sojo" can protect the board, most "Ice Barrier" players will skip him in deck building or struggle to get him on the field. Also, their lockdowns are never absolute and they rely on several monsters being on the field at the same time, so disposing of one or two can already be enough to tip the field on your favor. "Raigeki", "Dark Hole", "Torrential Tribute" or even single target removal can do the trick.
  • "Ice Barriers" do need quite a number of generic Spell cards to get started, which makes any option that eliminates Spells effective against the archetype; therefore, "Imperial Order" and the like can seriously dampen their potential.
  • The "Ice Barrier" archetype mostly builds defense against attacks but has little to nothing against burn effects, so decks like "Chain Burn" or "Trickstars" can simply melt the player's life points while completely ignoring any defensive setup.

References[edit]

  • V Jump editorial department (February 26, 2013). 遊☆戯☆王デュエルターミナルマスターガイド (Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Terminal Master Guide) (in Japanese). Shueisha. ISBN 4-08-782493-4.CS1 maint: ref=harv (link)