Little Busters! Deck Tech – Rin Waifu

LB Rin

Welcome to the 9th CX’s deck techs! Today we take a look at Melanie’s recent Rin Waifu deck which went to the top 4 of the annual Illiana Waifu Tournament. Special thanks to Melanie for the article & in-depth analysis (link below), and Johnny for article prep. In line with our other waifu deck lists, we will not be subjecting the deck to the same breakdown of viability, power level, etc, but we will be discussing card choices.

For the tournament, these rules were observed for deck building:

  1. Your deck must be constructed of all but four cards of one character. You are allowed 4 cards that are of a different character but they cannot be level 3. The deck must be Neo-Standard and follow the JP ban list.
  2. A card is considered applicable to your character if they are the focus of the title. (e.g. Honoka, Energetic as Merit)
  3. If a card name does not focus on a character such as “Everyone Tree Climbing” then you would need to look at the card art. The TD version of this card would be only legal in a Honoka deck but the booster pack version would only be legal in a Kotori or Umi build.
  4. If the card has no “clearly defined” character in the card title or art such as Grief Seed then it is legal in any character deck from its series. For this event clearly defined means you can see their face or hair and such to 100% confirm that is the character. Just showing arms does not count. These cards do not count against your 4 cards that are not of your character pick.
  5. JP Level 3 red Marika is restricted to one per deck just as Neo-Standard rules permit.

It should be noted that these are house rules, but if you want to host a waifu event, by all means, these rules are not proprietary. (i.e. Try them out too, and have fun!)

If you would like to read through Melanie’s nearly 50-page analysis of every Rin card, you can find it here!

No, we are not kidding!

Onto the deck!

Cards – 50

Level 0 – 16
“Strength of Being Straightforward” Rin (LB/W21-103)
4 “Hotcake Party” Rin (LB/WE18-07)
3 “Good Friends” Komari & Rin (LB/W21-032)
“Fun Life” Rin (LB/WE18-18)
“Little Busters” Riki (LB/W21-065)

Level 1 – 11
“Rising Nyat Ball” Rin (LB/W21-P14)
4 “Sunset-colored Feelings” Rin (LB/WE18-03) 
Rin, Little Cheergirl (LB/WE21-06)
2 Searching for “Secret”, Rin (LB/W21-004) 

Level 2 –  9
“Godly Poor Control” Rin (LB/W02-017)
2 “Little Busters” Rin (LB/W21-005)
3 “What I Can Do Now” Rin (LB/WE18-20) 
Farewell Yukichi!! (LB/W21-078)

Level 3 – 6
4 “Step to Courage” Rin (LB/W21-001) 
2  “Irreplaceable Time” Rin (LB/WE18-01)

CX – 8
3 My Best Puppet Show (LB/W21-018)
We Should Date (LB/WE18-15)
To Find What Was Lost. (LB/WE18-28)

At level 0 we have 16 characters.


“Strength of Being Straightforward” Rin gets +2000 power if you have another character with assist.


“Hotcake Party” Rin gives all your other characters the ability “This card cannot side attack”.


“Good Friends” Komari & Rin is a +500 power front assist. And you can pay 1 stock and send them to the waiting room to choose a card in your clock and return it to your hand and then put a card from your hand into your clock.


“Fun Life” Rin gives your other character in the middle of your center stage +500 power. Her second ability is a 1 stock brainstorm: for every CX hit give a character +2000 power.


When “Little Busters” Riki is played from your hand you can pay 1 stock and clock the top card of your deck to search for 1 level 1 or lower character and add it to your hand.

At level 1 we have 11 characters.


You can rest one of your [Animal] and/or [Sports] characters to give “Rising Nyat Ball” Rin +1500 power until the end of the turn.


When “Sunset-colored Feelings” Rin attacks with the CX “We Should Date” in play you can tutor for 1 level 2 or higher character.


Rin, Little Cheergirl gets +X power until end of turn on play, X = to the number of [Animal] characters you control times 500.


Searching for “Secret”, Rin gives your other character in the middle of your center stage +1500 power. And when an opponent’s character is returned from waiting room to hand you can put the top card of your deck into your stock.

At level 2 we have 7 characters and 2 events.


When “Godly Poor Control” Rin reverses her opponent you can return her to your hand. She is also a pay 1 stock +3000 power backup.


“Little Busters” Rin is a level assist to front and on play you can pay 1 stock discard 1 to search your deck for an [Animal] character.


When “What I Can Do Now” Rin attacks with the CX “To Find What Was Lost” you can put the top  2 cards of your deck into your stock.


Farewell Yukichi!! is an event backup and when you use it you can choose 1 of your opponent’s characters and that character cannot deal damage this turn. (This includes on-reverse burn and punish burn)

At level 3 we have 6 characters.


When “Step to Courage” Rin Attacks with the CX “My Best Puppet Show” in play she gets +3000 power  and gains a burn trigger until the end of turn. She also heals on play.


“Irreplaceable Time” Rin let’s you pay 2 discard a level 1 or higher character when you play a CX to bounce 2 of your opponent’s characters on the center stage. And when she is front attacked you can scry 1.


For CXs we have a 3/3/2 split between 1k1s shot2k1, bar.

Now for some words from Melanie before we look at how to play the deck.


Our recent community rules for waifu deck building, which were created in light of the more powerful Love Live! builds that became available this year with their waifu emphasis, allowed for this build to be possible. I was able to splash blue by running 4 of the Riki 0/0 to search out my Level 1 and lower game, and then because the non-specific money counter event didn’t feature a character I was able to run it to counter damage late game. Depending on your local tournament structure for waifu tournament this may not be allowed. If so, I recommend adding in an additional of the 1/0 “Rin, Little Cheergirl” and an additional 2/1 Rin for the stock charge combo. You may also decide to tech in a copy of the 2/1 that changes into the 3/2, or the 2/1 PR Rin that gets +1000 for each animal character that attacks before it. If you find that the blue splash gets in the way at that point, and want a bit more green, I recommend the Kud animal trait clock fixer that goes to memory on reverse after resolving the effect from the Kud Wafter set to replace Riki as the early game searcher.  If you’re able to run him, I still think Riki is the stronger choice because he is a plus to hand rather than a hand filter.

Next, on card choice.

This was a very hard deck to build, and because of it there are some very viable options that are missing in the above build. Probably the one I would receive the most arguments about is not running the 2/1 change into the 3/2 “Step to Courage” Rin. I found in playtesting that the change wasn’t helpful. The heal was effective on change, but because the change is at the Encore step I found that the 3/2 Rin either got powered over by my opponent’s early drop on the following turn (not giving me a chance to use the finishing combo at all), or got bounced back to hand (if played in the back row and rested with the 1/0 “Rising Nyat Ball, Rin” ability). At that point then I had wasted stock and the effort of the change to get her out, and I was at Level 3 typically at that point anyway and could have just played her from hand for 2 stock, instead of the 3 involved in the change. Then the changer also left me with the challenge of not having a Level 2 power game plan, with the 7500 before assists not really hitting a power level to deal with my opponent’s early drops or counters. It was really bad against decks with wall Level 1 options with a counter that could still power over as well to reverse her.

Another missing card that some may wish to tech in is the 1/0 vanilla 1500 counter “Save the Cafeteria, Rin” from Little Busters! Anime. I came to the conclusion after some play testing that it was a dead card in hand most of the time because Rin hits power levels on your turn, not on defense, at Level 1. Almost all of her cards are meant to get power on play, or have power ups on your turn, and it goes away during your opponent’s turn. Most of the time I kept clocking those counters to draw more characters to attack with, or wishing I had a more substantial character to attack with.

I avoided 1/1 characters. I realize that Rin has some power cards that cost a stock to play, including the 1/1 anti-character counter that will usually be a 7000 before assists. But, unlike the 1/1 Kotori in Love Live! or some other sets who have these characters, Rin’s event counters, while decent, aren’t enough of a boost to warrant the deck slot. Character counter is basically the 1500 which can also work because of the wording on the card, but if enough animal traits get bounced from your field to hand or leave it due to an effect it becomes unreliable as well. 

The 1/1 anti-salvage is a tech option that some will also not care for. Our local meta was running a lot of salvage heavy waifu builds for this tournament (Marika, Honoka, Lisbeth, Rin (Fate/Stay), Chris, and Maria to name a few) and I felt for certain match-ups that it not only gave me extra stock but it gave a nice power boost to my front center stage. It could also be rested and help power up the 1/0 Rin PR. True, it is a risk taking the blind stock because it may be a cancel, but most of the time it wasn’t (it was usually damage approximately 75% of the time) and because it was on top of the stock it got paid out almost immediately (sometimes to encore a character to preserve hand for the next turn if they did a ton of salvaging). I didn’t seek it out in every match up and it was usually a Riki search target for the match-ups I needed it in. Others might choose to replace it with an extra 0/0 assist and 2/1 assist, or with the 1/0 Rin from the Ecstasy booster.

There are several options at Level 2 that you could run in this build that I choose not to. The 2/1 Rin PR that gets +1000 power for each other Animal character that attacks before it is definitely worth considering as a 2 of (probably not more than 3 since they won’t all benefit from the stack bonus if you have a row of them attacking) and the 2/1 that gets power on condition from Ecstasy also isn’t bad. The stock charge combo is definitely a gamble, but the gold bar trigger keeps that climax from going to stock and usually gets it in hand, and the stock charge typically gets paid out on defense right away. Almost 90% of the time in play testing, I would be out all my CXs and a pile of cards in the deck left and I was able to just send a ton of it to stock clean, aiding in compressing and avoiding extra damage. The 2/1 wind bounce combo from the Card Mission Extra Booster isn’t bad, but getting the climax in hand to consistently get it off in a 3 climax build can be a challenge (the gold bar of the stock charge combo triggers to hand making this easier) and the Level 3 Rin does it slightly better for a little bit more cost if you have the stock. It is still a great way to deal with wall (high power) cards, and definitely an option.

I actually own the +2 soul PR version of the Rin “We Should Date” CX. (MUST BE NICE -Michael) I could have put it in this build, but because a majority of Rin’s cards are in yellow (green is her splash color in many cases), I found in play testing that it wasn’t as consistent as the 2k1. Especially if I had to choose a color to level myself with. This is different from the meta build variant that runs quite a bit of green. Also, while the 2k1 does less overall soul damage, it does get replaced by drawing a card to hand. This is important because Rin doesn’t have a ton of defensive power. She gets powered up to big numbers on your turn, but usually reversed on your opponent’s turn. So having ways to maintain and refill hand size is important and the +2 soul  wasn’t optimal for that. Now, there are ways to incorporate more Green in this build which others may prefer, and some will prefer to push for damage by running the +2 soul climax variant.

I hope you enjoy the guide and the deck build. Feel free to use this as a template to build your own Rin Little Busters! deck (there are so many options!).

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