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[Strategy Guide] Ghost Buster - A Guide to 2v2


#1

This guide was written by @SouthpawHare

2v2 Yomi is one of my favorite games of all time, more so than even Vanilla Yomi. The fact that it is not playable here online yet has likely dampened its popularity, but that hasn’t stopped me from playing it as often as I can manage with my other gaming groups and communities. As one of the most experienced players at the game mode, I decided that I could try making a guide on the matter. Here’s a look at what I’ve found.

Here’s a link to the rules for those who are unfamiliar: http://www.sirlin.net/yomi/rules
The rules for 2v2 Yomi start on Page 16.

Realworld Concerns:

The fact that 2v2 Yomi is currently only viably playable in-person in a real-life setting gives rise to several properties worth consideration.

Communication and Teamwork:

As with any team game that allows for sharing of information between teammates, doing so is naturally extremely important. However, this can be problematic you and your partner are generally within earshot of your opponents. Working out special ways to communicate with your partner is an important consideration - you may need to devise gestures and handsigns, codewords, or simply be able to leave the room regularly in order to discuss strategy. It is even more important to determine your preferred method of communicating ahead of time if you are playing with some form of timer or chess clock. Try to find a balance between getting enough discussion done, not letting your opponents hear your discussions, and not taking too much time.

Character Selection:

A further limitation of the real-world playstyle is that Mirror Matches, while not technically illegal, are likely unfeasible as players will not likely own multiple copies of decks. As such, players will need to determine a fair method of picking characters for all 4 players. The method I recommend is the 1/2/1 method: this means that one team has first pick of one character, followed by the other team having pick of both of their characters, and finally with the first team picking their second character. If playing multiple games and desiring to use counterpicking rules of sorts, allowing the losing team to choose new characters, those players should be allowed to choose from the winning team’s characters as possible choices, allowing (and forcing) the winning players to which if and only a losing player wants to use their previously played character.

Benched Characters:

The effects of sitting on the bench are the following:

  • Gain 2 HP each turn (up to max HP)
  • Draw an additional card each turn
  • Do not spend a card each turn, effectively netting 1 card per turn (up to max hand size)
  • Can be tagged in to do damage in extra-effective ways
  • Safe storage of card effects that attach to character cards

Upon reading the rules and noting that a benched character gives benefits while having a knocked out partner does not, it is immediately obvious that keeping both players on a team alive is substantially more effective than having only a single remaining character on a team. Put another way, having a character knocked out means that the benched benefits are wasted. However, the question is a matter of defining this value - how valuable is keeping both players alive, and how much should you prioritize it? Make no mistake - the answer is quite a lot.

The health gain is probably the first effect of a benched character that comes to mind. Healing 2 HP per turn is certainly something that adds up heavily over-time - however, this is only a gain if you are doing so while the enemy team is not, which makes healing more of a typical case while the threat of being unable to heal is the punishing effect. As such, you should consider it less a matter of healing yourself and more a matter of preventing your opponent from doing so. Attempting to keep your healthiest opponent benched (such as through Snapbacks) is a two-fold advantage to you, as it not only allows you to focus-fire on the weaker target, but also allows you to have them potentially waste their healing (and occasionally hand cards) by hitting against their cap.

The ability to accrue a net of +1 card per turn is also very valuable. There are no characters who don’t like having more “free” cards, and some “build-up” characters benefit from it even more than others. Keep in mind, however, that this is not truly the fastest way to build-up cards, and only the safest. Blocking as the active character nets +2 cards per turn, and other character effects allow for fast buildup as well - compared to these options, +1 cards per turn is only a bit above average. In addition, almost all forms of tagging cost cards for swapping both in and out, decreasing the benefit further. The steady card gain is good, but not as amazing as it might first seem.

Perhaps the most advantageous effect of having a benched character, however, is their potential to do damage as a tag partner. Let’s consider each type of tag individually:

Tagging:

Combo Tag:

Combo tags are the bread-and-butter of any tag-team match; they allow one person to start a combo while another finishes it. This allows much of the risk/reward of a situation to be split between the members of the team - the lead player will take on the risk of the play, while the second player reaps the benefits.

The main usage of this is simply increased damage output. Any character with a throw that does inefficient damage but can combo can tag from their throw and have their ally perform a damaging combo, making throws from non-grappler characters much more frightening. Character specialties also begin to shine here, allowing characters with fast-but-weak starters/linkers to lead into the slow-but-damaging enders of their ally.

It is also possible to tag into a partner’s Straight Combo, alleviating the risk involved in potentially failing at landing a straight of normal attacks. This can guarantee one or more aces, which is always great, but perhaps even more so here - we’ll get back to why later…

Dodge Tag:

The jury is in on this one - to no one’s surprise, dodge tagging is extremely powerful. Dodging into a tag can allow a full-combo of any sort by your ally, including the typical Can’t Combo moves allowed by a dodge, effectively making every team collectively capable of using Ghost Riposte at will (though mind the cost!).

The use of dodge tagging is perhaps the biggest concern when evaluating the synergy of characters; many characters have limited numbers of dodges (including :rook:'s extreme limit of 0), while others have a high number (:setsuki:, :quince:) or the ability to recur them (:degrey:, even if the effect is redundant). Matching a character with a high number of dodges with one who lacks them is an excellent property to consider when trying to have two characters cover each others weaknesses. The ability for :rook: to dodge-confirm into Checkmate Buster, for instance, is a powerful ability that he simply does not have access to normally.

Super Cancel Tag:

Tagging using the Super Cancel Tag is both difficult to setup as well as inefficient, and is relatively low-value. The damage-scaling applied is a very heavy detriment and should be considered a waste, as other methods of tagging allow for easier-than-normal confirmation into full-fledged ace damage anyway. It is recommended that one only use this option if it would cause lethal damage to an enemy character, or if tagging out the active character is an especially high priority.

Power-up Tag:

Power-up tags are the most boring-but-practical method of tagging, resulting in no extra immediate damage but being extremely efficient. Unlike other methods of tagging, they have no additional cost, requiring only that a power-up takes place. Additionally, they have no cost to the incoming player, allowing them to be fully-primed for combat. These types of tags can be deceptively scary, resulting in a suddenly very advantageous position despite the lack of immediate damage.

Gold Tag

Not an defined mechanical method of tagging per-se, but perhaps one of my personal recommendations for types of plays that one would not normally consider. A Gold Tag is simply a power-up tag in which the cards that are used for the power up are aces.

Under normal 1v1 game rules, the act of powering up aces is almost completely useless, having only a handful of viable use cases such as with :lum: or against :persephone:. Here, however, with the added benefit of being able to tag for “free” as an added effect, its value can be much higher, and comes down to the value of swapping characters at any given time. Certainly, powering up with cards that are less-valuable than aces is still a better idea, but one should not hesitate to have a net loss of 1 ace in order to get to safety if necessary.

The ability to Gold Tag makes the Gold Burst ability of jokers extra-powerful, especially on a low-hand. Using a Gold Burst can not only allow one to get out of a sticky combat situation, but it also guarantees that one will have the material cost required to perform a Gold Tag. The character will then immediately be able to swap out, and their ally will have an additional ace for their troubles. Using jokers in this way can be thought of as a useful form of tagging all its own.

Gold Tagging can also come up with using a Combo Tag into a Normal Straight. After one character combo tags into a second and the second character performs a normal straight, they will gain one or more aces, making it likely that they will have the requirements to immediately tag out again during the power up phase if they wish. This can allow a character to trade the benefit of the gained aces for the chance to deal damage safely, and should not be under-estimated.

Raw Tag:

As should be immediately clear, this type of tagging is simply painful to do. Even despite the high priority that saving allies should have, the vulnerability of No Card and the potential damage that can ensue from it is very likely to not be worthwhile. In fact, this option is most viable in the opposite case - sending near-death ally to take the hit from a powerful setup, such as when :quince: has a strong advantage next turn. Even so, there are few cases where one can justify raw tagging as a solid choice - consider this option only as a last resort.

Snapbacks:

With the value of focus-firing in mind, snapbacks are invaluable - it can be very easy to forget about them as you focus on merely beating on your opponent, but do not fall into this trap. Using snapbacks to keep the weakest member of the enemy team in is highly valuable, and very often worth the cost of the snapback. It becomes especially critical against characters like :argagarg: that can do damage from the bench. Do not under-estimate the value of snapbacks.

Characters and Teams:

With all of the effects and complexities of the mode thus far in mind, let’s consider the individual characters. Keep in mind that I only have experience with the characters currently physically in-print.

:rook: Rook - Rook is a character of extremes in 2v2 mode - even more so than in 1v1. Rook has the potential to have high synergy with any character that is substantially faster than he is and has an above-average amount of dodges. Rook benefits greatly from all forms of tags that his ally can perform to get him in, but has a very difficult time getting back out again with the lack of dodges and combo-capable throws. As such, Rook is the most heavy user of the Gold Tag option, and may consider tagging into a straight combo simply for high damage before expending the gained ace (and another) to immediately leave if necessary. Dodge tag into Checkmate Buster is powerful, but difficult to achieve as Rook will likely use his power-ups to tag out and grant the aces to his partner, while the reverse is much less common - as such, it is extremely unlikely for him to possess all 4 aces at any given time, even when using power-up frequently.

:degrey: DeGrey - Good old Jefferson knows how to use teamwork. By coordinating and planning the uses of tags systematically, DeGrey can engineer his hand to have exactly the number of cards he wishes, using the bench to recover to a modest point before switching back in to expend. While this is true for all characters to an extent, it allows him very precise control of his innate ability. The nature of his ace dodge also gives him a high number of dodges, allowing him to be one of the characters who can cover for an ally character’s lack of such.

:setsuki: Setsuki - Setsuki is another character that synergizes well with many others. For starters, she also has a high amount of dodges, which also are normally one of her weakest choices of plays in 1v1 mode when not using Speed of the Fox - Dodge tagging makes them much more dangerous. Although it might seem that sitting on the bench and gaining cards would be a waste for her, the healing benefits her proportionately the most out of any character (tied with the theoretical characters :gloria: and :menelker:). Additionally, since her aces might be considerably less valuable than those of her ally’s, she can make use of power-up tagging (including gold tagging) to grant the more-valuable aces of her ally’s to them.

:argagarg: Argagarg - The fact that Hex of Murkwood does work from the bench makes Arg very potent. It allows him to be even more of a pacifist than usual - in fact, you would be forgiven for simply considering Arg to be a passive effect himself, and consider him an extra super-powerful innate for his ally. Arg’s foes are highly incentivized to use snapbacks and focus firing to take him out quickly, and he naturally has a target on his big, squishy back. He will likely want to use power-up tagging early and often.

:rook: + :degrey: Team Ghost Busters - Ahh yes, the reason for the name of the guide (it’s a reference to Marvel vs Capcom 1, in which the names of the finishing moves of both characters would be combined upon their victory, often to humorous effect). Rook and DeGrey are probably one of the most highly synergized teams of characters in the game in my opinion, and its easy to see the vulnerabilities of each are covered by the other: Rook’s lack of dodges are covered by DeGrey’s easy access to dodges, DeGrey’s poor throws are covered by Rook’s amazing throws, Rook’s lack of jabs (2 or 3 attacks) are possessed by DeGrey, and DeGrey’s low-damage normal attacks are contrasted to Rook’s high-damage normal straights. Both characters have little trouble with low-card hands, and as such can afford to tag regularly as needed without fear of wasting their potential to build-up. This team has no glaring weaknesses.

This guide was written by @SouthpawHare


Collected Yomi Resources
#2

From experience, I can definitely say Menelker is super strong in 2v2.
As is Gloria.


#3

I love the Jaina/Grave Team for 2v2. Both Players will build hands quite easily if Jaina starts in the ring because of her innate(and disposible 10-blocks).

You could even combo-swoop Grave in for 51 dmg while Jaina buys her Initial Combo back from the bench, or drive this even further and super tag at the end of that “additional” 51 dmg with a single ace to let Grave reload at the bench.
Super-tags in general become quite a good Option for both of them giving the nature of their single aces and Jainas “unstable” power.

This Team may not be best to play a counterpicky-style-2v2, but it is a high dmg one, which is quite fun in itself.


#4

I played this twice at evo 2 years ago and I was still relatively new to it. But I remember Gloria being absurd I didn’t know what to do about it haha. I guess I could have snapped her in and prevented the overdose heals + spheres.


#5

Yeah you really have to snap in Gloria to prevent her just doing as she pleases.

I played this with DeGrey/Rook vs Setsuki/Geiger and we killed them with the unlockable 15 combo.