Dark Neostorm released roughly three and a half years ago. This set was stacked with extremely impactful cards such as Cynet Mining and Ib the World Chalice Justiciar. However, the (probably) most impactful and (definitely) most infamous was Mystic Mine. So why is this card still legal?
I truly believe Mystic Mine to be the most widely hated card in the history of this game. Mind you, I wasn't around back when Yata-Garasu was poking people into oblivion as I only started playing in 2017. However, during my delvings into the game's history, I have never seen such widespread disdain as for the mine which is mystic. But why the hate? Are players just crying because they're not playing backrow removal? Is it truly a skilless, sacky floodgate? Well, there's a saying in Spain: "Ni tanto ni tan poco," which roughly means, "not as much, not as little." Yes, it is a floodagate and floodgates are unfun and the worst part of the game. Yes, playing backrow removal does out it. But does it make the game better?
Now Mystic Mine is simply an individual piece of a much bigger machine called generic floodgates. If you've been following my articles, you've no doubt come to realize that I strongly dislike these cards. I stand by all my arguments. Generic cards that turn off a core mechanic of Yu-Gi-Oh! with little to no cost should not be a part of the game. This feeling, I hope and think, is shared by the community at large. The entire playerbase joined forces against Imperial Order, and with good reason. But still, a part of me feels like Mystic Mine is slightly different.
It's dumb. Let's get that out of the way. Have you ever read Kaiser Colosseum? Yeah, this one is banned because it's stupid, generic, and most importantly, unfun. As you may be able to guess, I'm mentioning this old, continuous spell intentionally. Back in the day, this floodgate was exploited by decks looking to sit on a single monster throughout most of the game. Bujin was a deck that greatly benefited from this. Summoning Bujin Yamato and protecting it with its own effect until your opponent died from old age was a strategy you had to expect during the Judgment of the Light format. In a very similar vein, Mystic Mine causes games to devolve into grind fests of continually passing turns until the heat death of the universe.
At its worst, Mystic Mine causes skilless situations where you just have to "draw the out." These games are what people most commonly associate with the field spell. Especially when in 2022, Mystic Mine Stun won a goddamn YCS. Quickly forgotten—because it sucks—this deck aimed to set up a Mystic Mine and flood the opponent's field with useless do-nothing monsters so they got locked out of playing the game. And the sad reality is that most Mine apologists are also people who used to play these decks reminiscent of watching paint dry.
However, not everything's dark in the Mystic Mine. Something people tend to forget is all the formats where Mystic Mine is just a supporting second card. Yes, they're much less common, but they do exist. And these are the situations which make me doubt if I truly want this card out of the game. Sometimes, it just means a more interactive Dark Ruler No More. And that's a part I love about the game. Cards don't have a role written in stone. Their use cases vary and adapt to every given format, making for extremely creative deckbuilding and interesting gameplay.
I particularly remember playing this absolute pile of a 60-card Phantom Knight deck which utilized Predaplant Ophrys Scorpio to search Fusion Destiny and ran a ton of going-second cards, including the aforementioned Dark Ruler No More, Forbidden Droplet, and obviously Mystic Mine. And not to mention all the formats where Mine just isn't good. During Virtual World, people just had in-engine outs to it in the form of Virtual World Gate - Chuche. This is just one example of many decks which include outs, such as Salamangreat, Orcust, Sky Striker, Runick, Floowandereeze … Even now, Tearlaments can find ways to pop it with Primeval Planet Perlereino. Bystial decks can remove it with Branded Beast. I find it interesting how, for most of its lifetime, Mine hasn't really been played that much.
With all that said, I still stand for Mystic Mine needing to be banned. Spell floodgates with little to no restrictions just aren't fun. Now, we all saw Joshua Schmidt summoning Beat Cop from the Underworld in order to protect his Mystic Mine from his opponent's out. This catapulted the floodgate into the spotlight of the community's wrath. And rightfully so. I'm all for innovation, but protecting a floodgate is not quite the innovative gameplay I'm looking for. In two very close events, we saw floodgates take game after game, and people almost assumed that this would be the last we'd see of Spellstone Sorcerer Karood in his little cave.
But once the ban list came, Mine was still running around. Why? Well, I've learned to accept that Konami understands their own game a lot better than I assumed. Again and again, we have craved for cards or whole engines to be hit, only for time to prove that there was no need. Despia, Adventurer, Swordsoul, Eldlich, and many more were all decks people were absolutely convinced would wind up on the ban list, but they ended up dodging it. Mystic Mine might just be the last in a long line of overblown threats which will gracefully slide into irrelevance. I doubt the community's most beloved field spell will stay forever, and I have high hopes I'm right on that one.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, not of Cardmarket.