The archetype's main strategy is almost entirely based on tightening their defense and loading the Graveyard, since most support for the Gusto archetype requires 2 or more Gusto monsters to be shuffled into the Deck. The Deck relies on heavy defensive tactics, beginning with its trio of searchers which form what Duelists refer to as "the recruiter loop": "Winda, Priestess of Gusto", "Gusto Gulldo" and "Gusto Egul." These three cards can continuously search one another out of the Deck when destroyed in battle while simultaneously filling the Graveyard for other Gusto monster effects. For example, "Caam, Serenity of Gusto" can shuffle 2 Gusto monsters back into the Main Deck in order to draw a card, and "Musto, Oracle of Gusto" can shuffle 1 Gusto monster into the Deck and negate various monster effects. Both "Pilica, Descendant of Gusto" and "Windaar, Sage of Gusto" also have an effect that Special Summon "Gusto" monsters from the Graveyard, providing more field presence.
Overall, Gusto Decks are naturally passive, having a resilient defensive strategy and great recycling/draw power. With the right build, however, they can surprise an unwary opponent with little effort (especially against aggressive-type and OTK-based decks).
Duel Terminal Storyline
A tribe that lives with the wind and worships the bountiful land they’ve lived on since ancient times. Against their various outside enemies they link their hearts together with and battle along animals that live around in order to protect their land through the generations. However, the Steelswarms started to take over the surface land. So, the Gustos united with the other clans to create a temporary union lead by Vylons. They obtained new powers to fight back the Steelswarms. Soon, the union finally defeated the invaders, but conflicts haven't lowered yet; the Vylons decided to stop the wars between clans — by exterminating them completely. Later, the Gusto teamed up once againwith the other clans in order to cease the Vylon's actions.
After stopping the Vylons, the union between the tribes disbanded. At the time, Gusto tribes were in danger of being attacked by the Gishkis (with goals to claim all the Mist Valley's resources by themselves for their rituals). Fortunately, the Gem-Knights foresaw this, and they lend their powers to protect Gusto tribes from danger. After the lswarms appeared and threatened to destroy the world, the Gusto decided to join forces with Gem-Knights and Constellars to stop lswarms for good.
Below are the connections that Gustos have, either within their own tribe or with outsiders:
The root of all Gusto decks, this deck focusing on blocking enemy's onslaught using numerous Gusto recruiters while also filling up their Graveyard in order to take advantage of "Caam, Serenity of Gusto", "Contact with Gusto" and "Daigusto Gulldos". Switching monster controls (via "Reeze, Whirlwind of Gusto" and/or "Creature Swap") is a common tactic in this deck, since most Gusto monsters have below-average ATK, and many of them have effects that Special Summon another when destroyed in battle. "Daigusto Sphreez" is the ace of this deck, and when combined with low-ATK trait of most Gusto monsters, can inflict massive damage to opponent (sometimes even leading into OTK).
With the release of "Pilica, Descendant of Gusto", the deck's now slightly have more focus at getting necessary Tuners in the Graveyard, but still retain the basic defense of the recruiter loop. Pilica becomes staple in this deck (along with "Emergency Teleport"), since she's not only enables this deck to Summoning Sphreez faster without relying on interaction with your opponent, she also lets you swarming the Field faster when combined with "Call of the Haunted" and "Limit Reverse", something that the previous deck build didn't have. Besides "Daigusto Sphreez", Xyz Monster like "Totem Bird" are also highly recommended for easy countermeasure against enemy's Spell/Trap cards.
Additionally, this build works very well with "Gusto Griffin", which allows for incredible swarming potential when discarded by "Quickdraw Synchron"'s effect. This aforementioned combo allows the player to swarm the field easily, even without consuming your Normal Summon. However, without it "Gusto Griffin" are usually dead draws, and due to deck space constraint and emphasis on speed, this variant can only use 2 (at most) of each "recruiter loop" Gusto monsters most of the time, limiting the deck's defense capabilities.
Basically, it is an Anti-Meta Deck that has similar concepts as T.G. Anti-Meta Deck, but utilizing Gusto monsters instead. Gusto monsters maintain primary defense, while also using beatdown monsters such as "Beast King Barbaros", "Thunder King Rai-Oh", and/or "Malefic Cyber End Dragon", combined with "Skill Drain" and "Shrine of Mist Valley" for putting your opponent's strategy under pressure and at the same time covering virtually any weaknesses in your Gusto defense. "Caam, Serenity of Gusto" ensures that your defense line will always live, even under Skill Drain's and Necrovalley's influences (due to Caam's shuffling-to-Deck effect is a Cost which unaffected by those cards, except you will not get the draw effect in the former's case). Despite its Stun-esque strategy, "King Tiger Wanghu" is not recommended for use, since its effect will automatically destroy any Summoned Gusto recruiters, rendering this Deck's main strategy pointless (unless "Skill Drain" or "By Order of the Emperor" is active).
However, this deck also not without its downsides, though. Since most of the major plays come from "Gusto Griffin", this deck will mostly remain passive until you can draw "Gusto Griffin" and find a way to discard it (similar weakness to Dark World decks). To avoid this, it is recommended to quickly Summon "Dragunity Knight - Gae Dearg" and protect it, since it is the only currently reliable way to search and trigger your "Gusto Griffin".
A less-known, but similar hybrid of Gusto decks that's also geared towards utilizing "Gusto Griffin", this version mostly utilize the interaction between "Gusto Griffin" and "Zombie Master" to unleash numerous fast and efficient Synchro Summons. "Mezuki" is the integral part in this deck, for reviving any fallen Zombies, while "Goblin Zombie" and "Pyramid Turtle" can search any Zombie components required, along with "Plaguespreader Zombie" as its universal Tuner (and it's perfect for unleashing "Daigusto Sphreez"). This build is especially potent with "Zombie World" active, since it will significantly increase "Zombie Master"'s revival range, including the Gusto monsters themselves, while can also potentially disrupt other specifically Type-reliant and Tribute Summon decks such as Monarchs, Bujins, Fire Fists, etc.
Also, unlike most Gusto deck variants, this build tends to only have 2 of each of the "recruiter loop" members, possibly for accommodating the Zombie cards in the deck. This deck can also bring out Rank 4 Xyz Monsters easily, much like other Zombie-based decks.
As previously touched upon, a "Gusto" Deck's critical flaws are the below-average ATK of many of its monsters, making them somewhat unsuitable for attacks. Since this Deck's strategy relies heavily on the Graveyard, any form of banishments can damage or cripple the entire Deck. "Transmigration Break", combined with "Poisonous Winds" can effectively place this Deck in a deadlock, since most of Gusto support cards need a certain amount of Gusto monsters in the Graveyard to recycle them. "Gravekeeper" deck's "Necrovalley," can shut down this deck's almost any major play, while only "Caam, Serenity of Gusto" and "Daigusto Gulldos" that can bypass Necrovalley's limitation. "Archlord Kristya", "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo", "Summon Limit", and other anti-Special Summon cards can also shut down "Gusto" defenses down, due to their excessive needs of Special and Synchro Summoning.
"Abyss Dweller" and "Soul Drain" also pose a threat, as they can disable any in-Graveyard effects; including most of the searchers.
Finally, having too many "Gusto" recruiters in your hand (at least three or more, or two with the same name, particularly either "Winda, Priestess of Gusto" and/or "Gusto Egul") also can reduce their effectiveness, since they can only search for one another from the Deck.
This is probably referencing to the partnership between "Mist Valley" and "Dragunity" during the first generation wars of Duel Terminal world.
All "Gusto" non-Synchro Psychic-Type monster seems to have a pairing system between its male and female members, which determined by their Levels. If sorted from the highest to the lowest, it may resemble a family tree of some sort. According to that, one can be assume that "Windaar, Sage of Gusto" is their leader.
If you look closely to "Gusto" Psychic-type monsters' eyes (best examples are "Winda, Priestess of Gusto" and "Reeze, Whirlwind of Gusto"), you can see that they have cross-like marking in their pupils (slightly resembling Uchiha Itachi's Mangekyou Sharingan from Naruto series). However, some of Gusto monsters like "Kamui, Hope of Gusto" doesn't share this characteristic and it is currently unknown if the other Gusto members actually share this characteristic as well.
All "Gusto" Synchro Monsters and Gusto's non-Psychic-type, non-Xyz monsters share this characteristic.
This archetype has many similarities to the recently-introduced Yang Zing archetype. They had their own set of "recruiter loop" monsters which also works similarly, and both are also Synchro Summon oriented archetypes.