Top 5 items you shouldn’t play without + giveaway

If you’re playing Yugioh, you likely have gear or supplies other than just the cards. Or you’re looking to get some and want to know what the best is. Sure, you can play with bare cards on a bare table and keep track of everything in your head, but that ruins your cards and can make handling them more difficult. These are the top 5 items I would never play without.

Number 5: Dice

DiceJar-LCJW-EN-C-1EDice are useful for determining who goes first, keeping track of turns and counters, among various other things. I recommend you pick up a set. My preferred kind is smaller dice though the normal-sized dice remain more popular with most players. Just pick up a set and don’t lose them so that you don’t have to ask people to borrow dice.

Number 4: Something to keep track of life points

TheCalculator-YS15-EN-C-1EThe best way to keep track of life points is with a pen or pencil and paper. I really like field notes as little notepads. The notepads are graph paper, which some people really like and others hate. I haven’t seen a better small notebook yet. Many stores give out pads of paper, although you can’t always rely on your store providing paper.

The Boogie Board is something I saw online. I’ve never used one, so I can’t talk about it firsthand, but there are plenty of positive reviews. In a life point dispute, if one player has this, and the other player has physical paper, as a judge, I would have to assume the paper is correct. It’s still better than a calculator in a life point dispute. I wouldn’t use this at a tier 2 event, but at locals, it’s pretty cool.

Calculators are another disputed topic. Judges have to assume the paper is correct if one player has a calculator and the other has paper. I used a TI84 for locals because I already had it for school. It does way more than it needs to and kinda makes you look like a douche. I recommend the TI30 because it’s less than $20, durable and doesn’t take up a ton of space, nor does it take batteries.

Number 3: Play mat
Please don't use one of these
Please don’t use one of these

A mat is there to keep your cards off of the table and make picking them up easier. Most mats are made of a material similar to mouse pads and feel very similar to them. Konami creates mats for events and things, like sneak peeks or for judging a YCS. I prefer Khalsa Brain Games mats because they feel great. They are large two player mats and very soft. Most players who use these fold them in half because their opponent usually wants to use their own mat. They’re a bit pricey if not buying from Khalsa. Khalsa mats are what people mean when they say spellground mats.

For less than $15, you can get a mat from Ultra Pro that is the same quality as the Konami, but usually solid colors. Anime girls not wearing much clothing is a common print, but most people think it’s distasteful to use those. These mats are pretty nice and super simple as most are solid colors. They’re nice to play on and aren’t distracting. Would recommend.


Number 2: Deck Box
You need to top 4 a regional to get one of these
You need to top 4 a regional to get one of these

Please don’t use rubber bands or plastic bags for your decks. It’s not the best way to carry or store your cards. Single and double deck boxes both exist. Most players opt for a double box, but if you’re deck checked at a tier 2 event and you have cards not on your deck list in the double box, you will get a game loss. Double deck boxes are pretty nice though. You can keep the side and extra deck in one half while the main deck occupies the other half and still have room for a few dice. Or you could keep two full decks in one box.

Ultra Pro offers both double deck boxes and single deck boxes. Their doubles are less than $10 and singles are less than $2 each. They’re pretty good, but if handled roughly, you may find they’re a little flimsy. The double box is more cube-y than most double boxes you see, which some players may not like while others love it. Ultra Pro’s large single deck boxes are neat but are an awkward size for Yugioh decks. It’s too much space for one deck, not enough for two full decks. It’s really for Magic’s 100 card format, but I can’t stop you from buying one.

Ultra Pro’s deck tower costs more than most other boxes but is much better quality than most other boxes. It’s also significantly taller. The tower only holds one full deck (main, side and extra), but is super hard plastic and has a small tray underneath for dice, counters or whatever. I don’t like it because it’s so tall, but I know many players love it and don’t want to use anything else.

Monster is known for their good quality TCG gear. Monster double deck boxes are no exception. The two slots for cards are removable and interchangeable with all the other colors. I like swapping the black and white inserts. The box is super durable and I’ve never seen one break. The magnet clasp can come off if it’s old, but I’ve only seen that once. Konami’s double deck boxes are similar but feel slightly flimsier.

Number 1: Sleeves
Three out of four players don't bother with sleeves
Three out of four players don’t bother with sleeves

This is the most important thing to have. This makes shuffling easier and protects your cards. Everyone prefers different sleeves and those who have a preference are unlikely to change. Most packs of sleeves are between $4 and $7 with the average sleeve cost being less than 15 cents. Just make sure you get the small size sleeves (62mmx89mm)

Ultra Pro sleeves are my favorite for a few reasons. They’re pretty cheap, shuffle well, feel nice and don’t get so dirty. They do tear somewhat easily, which is why some people say they’re garbage. But I only use Ultra Pro. The pro-mattes are kind of hazy, and dull your holo cards’ luster, but show up better on camera. The high clarity kind is preferred by most players and is transparent plastic but are very reflective on camera.

Player’s Choice and KMC are very similar. To me, they feel the same. Each color feels a little different, though, possibly due to materials used for color. Gold feels awful to me and white feels the best. But all of their sleeves get dirty quickly and are easily marked. Also, they’re over $7 on Amazon, which is a determining factor for a lot of people, including myself.

Dragon Shield sleeves are probably the nicest sleeves I’ve used, and they’re what I use for Magic and Pokémon as I only ever casually played those games. They shuffle well, feel super nice, but are a bit pricey at $7ish and only come in 50 count packs. This means if you have a 40 card Main Deck, and a 15 card Side Deck, you still need 5 more sleeves to finish sleeving your side deck. That just isn’t a good feeling when buying a product. You want the one product to be able to do what it is meant to do. Sleeve all of your cards.

BONUS: Binder

I don’t think I need to explain what binders are used for. Monster binders are by far the best I’ve seen. Ultra Pro binders, like most of their other gear, is at least decent. They won’t last forever, but since Monster stopped making the 3×3 binders, Ultra Pro is a good alternative.
All of this stuff is kind of useless if you don’t have cards to go with them. Right now, Infinite Gold is just around the corner. Get yourself started.


XyzGift-PHSW-EN-UR-1E-I am giving away one deck tower and one set of dice
-Contest ended March 21, 2016 and a guy called Damon Ravage won
-Anyone with a U.S. delivery address may enter. (sorry to everyone overseas)
-The winner will be chosen at random from all of the entries received.
-The winner will receive one deck tower and one set of dice (both the winner’s choice of color)
-If you win you must reply to me from the email you entered with in order to claim your prize
-Should the winner be a Facebook or Twitter entry, you will receive a message on that platform

To enter, add your email to the contest submission on the right of the page. If you’re on mobile, it will be below.

You can enter up to two additional times by liking the Big Eye Facebook page and following Big Eye on Twitter. Each like of the Facebook page, follow from Twitter, and email entry will receive a number, then a winner will be chosen using

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