->''"You've activated my Trap Card!"''

The '''''Yu-Gi-Oh!''''' collectible card game first appeared in the [[Manga/YuGiOh manga of the same name]] as a {{homage}} to ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'', of which author Kazuki Takahashi is a fan. Originally, the manga was intended to feature a new game every few weeks, and with the trading cards being just one of many. However, Takahashi received a lot of fan mail asking how to play it, and so he cobbled together a rudimentary game system loosely based on that of ''Magic'' which [[NewRulesAsThePlotDemands generally]] agreed with how the characters played. Fan mail kept pouring in, and so the editor of ''Shonen Jump'' (in which the manga was serialised) [[ExecutiveMeddling persuaded]] Takahashi to rework the manga to have it appear more as an important plot device. When the [[AnimatedAdaptation anime]], which centered solely around the card game, proved a surprise international hit, {{Konami}} was approached to produce a real version of the game, which was released in 1999. The real game made considerable changes to the rules originally established by Takahashi, and so the manga and anime were revised to more closely reflect the rules of the real game.

''Yu-Gi-Oh!'' is essentially a game with different names and administration structures in different territories. The so-called ''Official Card Game'', or OCG, has been handled by Konami since the beginning; it administers East Asia. The other administration setup, called the ''Trading Card Game'' or TCG, was originally manufactured and distributed by Upper Deck Entertainment, at Konami's own behest, throughout the remaining territories worldwide. However, in 2008, UDE lost the license amid some allegations of wrongdoing, and now the TCG is administered by Konami as well. The game is roughly 99% identical on each side of the Pacific; the only differences are that some cards that debut under one administration do not appear in the other for a good, long while, if ever; there are some difference about the Damage Step rules; and, Konami alters some card artwork to prevent incidents with MoralGuardians.

Some of the core gameplay elements:

* Deckbuilding: Players construct their own decks, which must contain between 40 to 60 cards and no more than three of any single card ([[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/January_2014_Lists certain cards are limited to 2, 1, or 0 copies per deck]]). A secondary deck of no more than 15 cards can also be constructed; this "Extra Deck" contains "Fusion Monsters," "Synchro Monsters" and "Xyz Monsters" which are Summoned to the field by combining other monsters in various ways. As the official rules state that matches consist of best-two-out-of-three duels, players can also use an up-to-15-card "Side Deck" which can be used to modify the deck between duels in a match.
* Monster combat: Players can Summon monsters to fight the opponent. Stronger monsters have Summoning requirements, most commonly a sacrifice of other monsters.
* Card effects: Most monsters have special abilities aside from their brute force, which is almost always helpful for its wielder, such as the ability to destroy other cards, or to increase its attack strength from its default level. Spell cards are cards that are played directly from the hand with various effects. Trap cards also have special effects similar to Spells; however, they must be set face-down, and then activated later at a later time, which leads into...
* Hidden information: Monsters, Spells, and Traps can be "Set" face-down on the field to be revealed later, often springing a nasty surprise on the opponent. Recent releases have also increased the number of cards playable from one's hand at atypical, poignant, and decisive points of gameplay - essentially behaving like a "Set" card that didn't have to be "Set". Considering how removing and playing around Set cards was one of the game's dominant paradigms for nearly a decade running, these recent releases, when competitive, have had ''quite'' the impact.

A more complete overview of the rules can be found [[UsefulNotes.YuGiOh at this Useful Notes page]], the stories and tropes from the metaplot [[Metaplot/YuGiOh can be seen here]], and the character sheet from said metaplot is at [[Characters.YuGiOhCardGame this Character Sheets page]]. Subjective tropes can be found [[YMMV/YuGiOhCardGame here.]] Trivia can be found [[Trivia/YuGiOhCardGame here.]]

For the card game based off the [[Anime/YuGiOhFirstAnimeSeries first anime]], try [[TabletopGame/YuGiOhCarddasVersion Yu-Gi-Oh! (Carddas Version)]].

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!!This game provides examples of:

* AchillesHeel: Some cards have deliberate weaknesses to keep things interesting and keep them from becoming too powerful:
** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Earthbound_Immortal Earthbound Immortals]] are all very strong, unable to be attacked and can attack the opponent directly. But, they automatically destroy themselves if there's no Field Spell card on the field. Also, there can only be one Earthbound Immortal on the field.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Cloudian Cloudians]] must remain in Attack Position or they will destroy themselves.
** In the metagame, this trope is present through deck match ups, and side decking. The most prominent example of this trope the in competitive scene are, perhaps, the Dark World cards. A deck which is extremely fast, powerful, and can utterly wreck the first duel of the match. However, after said first duel, side in [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Consecrated_Light Consecrated Light]] or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shadow-Imprisoning_Mirror Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror]] and watch as they struggle against it.
* ActionGirl: Several. There are lady [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Warrior_Lady_of_the_Wastelands warriors]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/High_Priestess_of_Prophecy spellcasters]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Snoww,_Unlight_of_Dark_World fiends]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Soul_of_Purity_and_Light spirits]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Aria_the_Melodious_Diva fairies...]] and each of them can kick just as much ass as the male cards, or in some cases even more!
* AlienInvasion:
** The point of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Alien Alien]] monsters.
** Also the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Worm#Reptile-Type_Worms Worm]] monsters, the invaders of the DT planet.
* {{Amazon|ianBeauty}} [[AmazonBrigade Brigade]]: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Amazoness Amazoness]] archetype. Loads of scantily-clad, athletic, muscular warrior women.
* AnotherDimension: The D.D. (Different Dimension) cards.
* {{Antimatter}}: WordOfGod is that the Xyz Monsters are made up of this.
* ArmorPiercingAttack: Monsters that inflict piercing damage, such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ancient_Gear_Golem Ancient Gear Golem]] or a monster equipped with [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Fairy_Meteor_Crush Fairy Meteor Crush]]. When one attacks a defense-position monster, if its ATK is higher than that monsters DEF, the difference is dealt to the opponent as damage.
* ArtEvolution: The artwork featured on the cards was very simplistic in the early days, but as time went on, artwork became more varied, detailed and professional looking. For example, compare [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Flame_Manipulator this card]] ''(released in the original Legend of Blue Eyes White Dragon set)'' to [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Alpacaribou,_Mystical_Beast_of_the_Forest this one.]]
** Also, some specific cards have gotten updated graphics as time goes by. For example, compare the stylized and simplistic design of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/File:BlueEyesWhiteDragon-DPKB-EN-SR-1E.png 1st Edition Blue-Eyes White Dragon]] with the more realistic look of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/File:BlueEyesWhiteDragon-YAP1-EN-UR-LE.png the Anniversary Pack Blue-Eyes]].
* ArtificialStupidity: The gimmick of the Karakuri archetype is that they must attack if able (even if it would get them killed) and always shift into defense when attacked (even when their defense is lower, and they would survive if they counterattacked).
* AttackReflector: Available in [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Reflect_Bounder Monster]] or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mirror_Force Trap]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Attack_Reflector_Unit Attack Reflector Unit]], which trades in Cyber Dragon for Cyber Barrier Dragon.
* AwesomeButImpractical: [[AwesomeButImpractical/YuGiOh Subpage here.]]
* AwesomeMcCoolname: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Super-Nimble_Mega_Hamster Super-Nimble Mega Hamster]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Red-Eyes_Darkness_Metal_Dragon Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Chaos_End_Ruler_-Ruler_of_the_Beginning_and_the_End- Chaos End Ruler -Ruler of the Beginning and the End-]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Chaos_Emperor_Dragon_-_Envoy_of_the_End Chaos Emperor Dragon-Envoy of the End]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Super_Dimensional_Robo_Galaxy_Destroyer Superdimensional Robot Galaxy Destroyer]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Fire_King_High_Avatar_Garunix Fire King High Avatar Garunix]]
*** It would actually probably be quicker to name monster cards (or spell or trap for that matter) that don't have an AwesomeMcCoolname.
* BadassAdorable: Several Fairy-Type cards.
* BadassGrandpa: For example, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Grandmaster_of_the_Six_Samurai Grandmaster of the Six Samurai]].
* BadassNormal: Literally with Normal monsters like [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Alexandrite_Dragon Alexandrite Dragon]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gene-Warped_Warwolf Gene-Warped Warwolf]] for breaking the 'Level 1-4 monsters with 2000 ATK or more getting a negative effect' rule, and then there's [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Blue-Eyes_White_Dragon these]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Red-Eyes_Black_Dragon three]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Magician guys]], the former of these three having the highest ATK of all Normal monsters.
* BadSanta: Santa Claws's Japanese name is a pun on the fact that Satan is an anagram of Santa.
* BarrierWarrior: Big Shield Gardna, Mid Shield Gardna, Shield Warrior… okay, pretty much anything with the word "shield" in its name. Millennium Shield is a Warrior-type…and a literal shield.
** And, of course, there are many Monsters that can't be destroyed by battle, like [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Marshmallon Marshmallon]], so they're essentially a pseudo-unbreakable shield.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Total_Defense_Shogun Total Defense Shogun]] is probably the best example, as it's the first (of two) card stated to be able to attack while in Defense Mode.
** Some monsters cannot be targeted for attacks if there is a certain type or archetype on the field, or keep the opponent from attacking monsters of certain types (Solar Flare Dragon, Marauding Captain, Morphtronic Magnen). Getting two or more of the specific card can block nearly all potential attacks.
* BigDamnHeroes: Some cards have effects that emulate this trope. For example, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gorz Gorz - Emissary Of Darkness]] is Special Summoned when you take damage while having nothing on your field, and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Starlight_Road Starlight Road]] negates the destruction of two or more cards and Special Summons a Stardust Dragon from you Extra Deck. Not surprisingly, both cards are part of the MetaGame for that exact reason.
** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Constellar Constellars]] are a group of holy space knights that came from nowhere to defeat the [[TheCorruption corrupted Evilswarm Monsters]] destroying the Duel Terminal world... except, since Constellar Castor also [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evilswarm_Castor got corrupted]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Constellar_Meteor when he tried to prevent Constellar Pollux from getting infected]], they seem to be losing.
** The aptly named trap card "Dramatic Rescue". When an Amazoness monster is targeted by any card effect you can return it to your hand, saving it, and play a different monster in its place.
* BlackKnight: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Black_Luster_Soldier Black Luster Soldier]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Black_Luster_Soldier_-_Envoy_of_the_Beginning Black Luster Soldier-Envoy of the Beginning]]
* BlackMagicianGirl: TropeNamer, known in English as the Dark Magician Girl.
* BlindIdiotTranslation: Frequent on the early cards, many of which seem to have been translated by [[TheyJustDidntCare people who had absolutely]] ''[[TheyJustDidntCare no]]'' [[TheyJustDidntCare idea what they were doing.]] Among the most obvious examples is "Dunames Dark Witch," which is a ''[[NonIndicativeName Light-Attribute Fairy.]]'' Its original Japanese name is "Dynamis Valkyria". The fact that a card named "Valkyrie" became "Dark Witch" in the US suggests the origins of this mistake; all the same, it's no less unforgivable, especially since "Dark Valkyria" and "Magician's Valkyria" came out in English without any such mistakes.
** Fan translations can be guilty of this as well, such as the infamous "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Number_17:_Leviathan_Dragon Revise Dragon]]".
* BlowYouAway: A vast number of cards that deal with destroying other Spell or Trap cards happen to be named after wind effects, like [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mystical_Space_Typhoon "Mystical Space Typhoon"]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Heavy_Storm "Heavy Storm"]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dust_Tornado "Dust Tornado"]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wild_Tornado "Wild Tornado"]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Twister "Twister"]], and so on.
** As are two of the most popular "bounce" cards, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Giant_Trunade Giant Trunade]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Raiza_The_Storm_Monarch Raiza the Storm Monarch]].
** There are archetypes that has this theme, examples are the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Harpies Harpies]] and the more recent [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gusto Gusto]].
* BoringButPractical: Normal monsters, in general. They have no effects but often have good combat stats, and there's a lot of support for them, including lots of ways to Summon them from the Graveyard. Decks based around them focus on brute force rather than anything fancy.
** Of particular note: Level 4 normal monster cards with 1600+ ATK. Surprisingly easy to find, quick to bring onto the field and easily replaceable, they provide a more steady offensive counterpart to the high-ATK, difficult to Summon monsters of higher stars and can easily reach the attack power of those using equipment spells.
** Gadgets for a long time played on this. The goal of the Deck is to make the game as simple as possible by playing one-for-one destruction cards and, with the help of the Gadgets self replenishing effect, gain advantage and win effortlessly. Such Decks can be really boring to play with, or against, but it's really effective when played correctly.
** Ironically, see the AwesomeButImpractical entry. Read Machina Force there? Sure, Summoning it is downright hard to the point of pointless, but nobody said you can't discard it for Machina Fortress' revival effect. As a bonus, since its a Machina, some Machina support can work with it, creating some sorts of synergy.
** Obnoxious Celtic Guard could teach a college course on this. With an attack and defense of less than 1500 each, he doesn't seem like much to look at. If your opponent starts with any kind of a halfway decent hand, though, he'll usually have at least a level 6 or higher by the end of the first turn. Put OCG out in defense mode, and you'll be invincible until he can get either a board wipe spell. If you're lucky, you could spend the entire duel without taking a single direct hit because of him.
* BossBattle: This is the FanNickname for any monster card with more difficult than average summoning conditions, potent effects, high ATK and DEF, or any combination thereof. Just about everybody's deck includes one or more either as a lategame finisher that worked with whatever the deck was about (e.g. Five-Headed Dragon in a general dragon deck), or as the main focus of the deck with cards to help get it out as fast as possible (e.g. Judgment Dragon in a Lightsworn deck). The closest thing comparable to an actual boss fight is Vennominaga, the Deity of Poisonous Snakes, who is difficult to summon, yet is nigh-invincible once on the field.
* BottomlessPits: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Bottomless_Trap_Hole Bottomless Trap Hole]], especially since it's one of the most used cards in the game.
* {{Bowdlerize}}: In Japan, the Fairy type is actually Angel type (Tenshi-zoku).
** Many cards in the OCG that portray nudity, religion, guns, blood, bustiness, etc. were modified in the TCG release. Modified cards are listed [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/List_of_modified_cards here]].
** Generally, if you see a card with "Des" as part of the name (Except for Dark Ruler Ha Des), chances are that it was "Death" in the OGC.
** [[InconsistentDub Inconsistent Bowdlerization]]: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Eria_the_Water_Charmer Eria the Water Charmer]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wynn_the_Wind_Charmer Wynn the Wind Charmer]] have their skirts lengthened on the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Artworks:Raging_Eria Raging Eria]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Artworks:Storming_Wynn Storming Wynn]] cards, but not on their normal or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Familiar-Possessed_-_Eria Familiar-]][[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Familiar-Possessed_-_Wynn Possessed]] cards.
* BroughtDownToNormal: Almost literally; the continuous trap Skill Drain negates the effects of all monsters on the field.
** BroughtDownToBadass: A 3000 ATK monster with no effects is still a 3000 ATK monster; nothing to sneeze at. Skill Drain also happens to negate any ''negative'' effects the card may have, too, so a lot of monsters actually benefit from Skill Drain. The aforementioned Beast King Barbaros inverts this trope, being brought ''up'' to badass when its effect is negated.
* BuffySpeak: There's a card named [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Interplanetarypurplythorny_Dragon Interplanetarypurplythorny Dragon]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Interplanetarypurplythorny_Beast "Interplanetarypurplythorny" is now an archetype!]]
* BulletSeed: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Seed_Cannon Seed Cannon]] gains counters every time a Plant is Summoned (and plants are fairly good at swarming); sending the card to the graveyard damages the opponent the more counters are on it.
* ButtMonkey: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Goblin_Attack_Force Goblin Attack Force]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Goblin_of_Greed Goblin of Greed]] in the art of some of the other cards and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ojamas Ojamas]].
* CallARabbitASmeerp: Camel-like monsters are known as "Lacoodas" in the international releases. Back when the game was still in its BlindIdiotTranslation stage, someone translated the Japanese "rakuda" (camel) as "Lacooda," and the term apparently caught on, as it's continued to be used even after the translations have gotten better. Justified in that the original does not say "rakuda"; it says "rakuuda," and in katakana no less, implying that the name is meant to be a play on "rakuda" rather than the actual word. Still a case of LostInTranslation, as a similar pun could have been used for the English version (but then, given it first happened in Pharaonic Guardian, arguably the nadir for the game's translation quality, it's entirely possible there was no one on staff who would have ''recognized'' it as a pun).
* CaptainErsatz: Does [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Battlestorm Battlestorm]] [[VideoGame/{{F-Zero}} look familiar]]?
** There are not [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Zombyra_the_Dark one]], but [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO_Necroshade two]] for Comicbook/{{Spawn}}. The first one is an indirect example, because it's based on a fictional superhero comic from the manga, that was based on Spawn. The second one was directly based on Spawn himself.
** Likewise, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tactical_Espionage_Expert Tactical Espionage Expert]] is quite deliberately [[Franchise/MetalGear Solid Snake]] in all but name.
* [[CastFromHitPoints Cast From Life Points]]
** Many cards require a sacrifice of life points to activate.
** Nearly taken to an extreme with Toon World; the entirety of its text is "Pay 1000 Life Points to activate this card." That's it. Sure, now you can Summon your Toon monsters [[note]]some don't need it to be in the field to be…well, on the field[[/note]], but other than that, it just kinda sits there waiting to be destroyed.
** This is practically the Psychic-Type's main gimmick, with frequent payments to either fire off or maintain their effects. To balance this out, a good amount of their support cards involve healing.
** Some cards, like the Archfiend archetype from ''Dark Crisis'', require a life point payment to keep them on the field. A life point payment ''that is not optional''.
* CherryTapping: The "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Sparks Sparks]]" card does a measly 200 points of damage to the opponent--that's it. Most video game versions of ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' reward you with a bonus if you ever manage to finish off the opponent using "Sparks." They give a similar bonus if you manage to finish off the opponent with a Skull Servant, but at least you can give Skull Servant some good equip spell cards to boost its power.
* ChessMotifs: The first [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Archfiend Archfiend]] monsters released in the ''Dark Crisis'' pack. Their top support card is [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Checkmate Checkmate]].
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: The "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mark_of_the_Rose Mark Of The Rose]]" card causes this in the equipped monster - it switches sides constantly, such that whoever's turn it is at the moment gains control of the equipped monster.
* CollectibleCardGame: Obviously.
* ColorCodedStones: The game has the Gem-Knight cards (a {{Homage}} to the Elemental Hero archetype and the Crystal Beasts) which are named for and usually colored after a Gemstone (The exception is Gem-Knight Lazuli and maybe Gem-Knight Sardonyx) Their leader Gem-Knight Master Diamond has white armor and an AllYourColorsCombined RainbowMotif sword and background.
* ColorfulThemeNaming: The Dark World archetype monsters are all named after different colors. Complete with Dark Overlord Reign-Beaux.
* CombiningMecha: The VWXYZ archetype, culminating with the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/VWXYZ-Dragon_Catapult_Cannon Dragon Catapult Cannon]], the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Machina_Force Machinas]] and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Valkyrion_the_Magna_Warrior Magnet Warriors]], but ''[[{{Pun}} technically]]'' speaking, any Machine-type Fusion monster could be seen as this.
* ContestWinnerCameo: Quite a few cards are designed by fans.
* ContinuityCameo: Several cards have characters from the anime or manga on them:
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Unity Unity]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Yugi, Joey/Jonoichi, Tea/Anzu, Tristan/Honda and Duke]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Yu-Jo_Friendship Yu-Jo Friendship]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Atem and Joey/Jonoichi.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Judgment_of_the_Pharaoh Judgement of the Pharaoh]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Atem.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Kaibaman Kaibaman]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Seto Kaiba.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gravekeeper%27s_Visionary Gravekeeper's Visionary]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Mr. Ishtar.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gravekeeper%27s_Priestess Gravekeeper's Pristess]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Ishizu.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gravekeeper%27s_Descendant Gravekeeper's Desendant]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Marik.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gravekeeper%27s_Recruiter Gravekeeper's Recruiter]]: [[Anime/YuGiOh Odion.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Orbital_7_(card) Orbital 7]]: [[Anime/YuGiOhZexal Orbital 7.]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Princess_Cologne_(card) Princess Cologne]]: [[Anime/YuGiOhZexal Princess Cologne.]]
* ContinuityDrift: Early cards with remove from play effects, such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Bazoo_the_Soul_Eater Bazoo the Soul Eater]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Kycoo_the_Ghost_Destroyer Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer]], implied that monsters removed from play had their souls destroyed. More recent cards indicate that those monsters are actually sent to another dimension.
* CoolBoat: Holy damn, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Number_50:_Blackship_of_Corn Number 50: Blackship of Corn]].
** [[GhostShip Ghost]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ghost_Ship Ship]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Yomi_Ship Yomi Ship]] also count.
* CoolPlanes: The Mecha Phantom Beast archetype.
* TheCorruption: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/lswarm Evilswarm Archetype]] is based around monsters corrupted by the Evilswarm virus. This includes the infamous original Duel Terminal monster, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Brionac%2C_Dragon_of_the_Ice_Barrier Brionac, Dragon of the Ice Barrier]], which has mutated into [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evilswarm_Bahamut Evilswarm Bahamut]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Warrior_Dai_Grepher Warrior Dai Grepher]] is corrupted into [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Grepher Dark Grepher]] and then further into the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Lucius Dark Lucius Archetype]]
* CrazyPrepared: "Toolbox" is a type of deck that specializes on searching monsters with many unique (and sometimes situational) effects directly from the Deck or Graveyard to counter your opponent. For example, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gladiator_Beast Gladiator Beasts]] can "[[FanNickname Tag Out]]" after a battle and bring any other Gladiator Beast from the Deck, and Koa'ki Meirus can use [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Koa%27ki_Meiru_Urnight some]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Iron_Core_Specimen_Lab cards]] to get any monster they want, including a trio that literally [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Koa%27ki_Meiru_Wall can]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Koa%27ki_Meiru_Sandman stop]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Koa%27ki_Meiru_Guardian anything]].
* CreationSequence: Depicted in [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Terraforming Terraforming]].
* CreepyDoll: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shadoll Shadoll]] archetype are ALL this. Just look at their boss monster. [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/El-Shadoll_Nephilim Hoo boy...]]
* CripplingOverspecialization: Some cards exist simply to counter other, very specific cards and are otherwise worthless. "Anti Raigeki" exists only to counteract "Raigeki", "White Hole" only exists to counteract "Dark Hole", and both "Call of Darkness" and "Call of the Grave" exist only to counter "Monster Reborn".
** However, not all specializations are crippling; for example, "G.B. Hunter," designed to lock down a Gladiator Beast deck, still has enough DEF to serve as a desperate defense. Likewise, because "Monster Reborn" was first printed in the OCG on March 27, 1999, and wasn't first Semi-Limited until April 1, 2000, its own specific counters spent a few months in a rather less crippled state.
** The Allies of Justice appear to be an entire archetype based around overspecialization. Their effects almost exclusively revolve around the opponent's monsters being LIGHT-attribute or face-down. If they're not facing something with those criteria, they're in a lot of trouble. Note that the Worms are all LIGHT-attribute monsters with a lot of flip effects, meaning the Allies of Justice were designed to just fight this one enemy and nothing else!
** Most of the "HERO" support cards have ''really'' specific conditions, which hampered the deck's playability for quite some time. This was resolved when later Elemental Heroes were released that only specified a specific elemental attribute to be summoned; mix that with Super Polymerization that lets you use the ''opponent's'' cards as materials and suddenly they're competitive again.
* CrossoverCosmology: There are cards based on Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Celtic, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Incan and Norse mythology, among others. Well, when we say 'based', we mean 'has some small detail in common with'.
** [[JustifiedTrope Justified]] in the anime, as Pegasus (the creator of the game in the anime) claims to have based most of the cards on various inspirations, including the myths he encountered on his world tour.
* CuteIsEvil: Several fiend type or darkness attribute cards can be this.
* CuteMonsterGirl: A few, but probably the best example is [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tour_Guide_From_the_Underworld Tour Guide from the Underworld]], because she's, you know, a ''demon''.
* CyberneticsEatYourSoul: Gagagigo's eventual fate. He gets [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Awakened_Brave_Warrior_-_Gagagigo better]].
* DarkIsEvil: The DARK attribute has the greatest portion of evil-seeming monsters, but…
* DarkIsNotEvil: quite a few heroic cards, notably [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Zombyra_the_Dark Zombyra]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/A_Hero_Emerges the Dark]], the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Destiny_HERO Destiny HEROs]], the Dark Magician family, and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Allies_of_Justice Allies of Justice]], are also DARK.
** The flavor text of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Zure,_Knight_of_Dark_World Zure, Knight of Dark World]] seems to indicate that he's [[NobleDemon evil, but fair.]] WordOfGod says that all Dark World monsters are noble and good, they just ''look'' hideous and evil.
** The Allies of Justice are all DARK-Attribute, in spite of being, you know, [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin allied with justice.]]
* DeaderThanDead: Cards removed from play generally won't be seen again in the duel unless your deck is specifically designed to recycle them.
* DeathOrGloryAttack: Meta-version: the spell card [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Power_Bond Power Bond]] often inflicts such hefty damage on its user that when used, most prefer to end the game on the turn it's used. There's the tangentially related [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Limiter_Removal Limiter Removal]], which destroys all monsters it affects at the end of the turn. Naturally, the two are often combined with cards such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Cyber_End_Dragon Cyber End Dragon]] or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ultimate_Ancient_Gear_Golem Ultimate Ancient Gear Golem]] to crush the opponent.
* DeathWorld: The "Venom Swamp" field spell card will slowly kill ''everything'' on the field except the native Venom monsters. The "Zombie World" field spell card causes everything to count as zombies (even in the graveyard!) so it could be called an Undeath World.
* DemBones: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Skull_Servant Skull Servant]] and related cards, along with numerous other Zombie-types.
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: The "Ninjitsu Art" cards and Thunder King Rai-Oh. "Ninjitsu" means "Ninja Art" and "Rai-Oh" means "Thunder King".
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: Some monsters' relative ATK scores aren't exactly what you'd expect. For example, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Genesis_Star_God%2C_Sophia the supreme god of the Duel Terminal planet]] can be punched out by [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Roaring_Express_Train_Rocket_Arrow a train]] or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Master_of_Oz a giant koala]][[note]]Said god's effect does make getting out said train or giant koala an uphill battle[[/note]].
* DifficultButAwesome: The Koa'ki Meiru monsters all have high attack power and incredibly useful anti-meta effects and support cards. What makes them difficult to use is that they all destroy themselves at the end of the turn if you don't discard the Iron Core card or reveal a card in your hand that's the same type as the monster on the field (and there are many different types of Koa'ki Meiru monsters!). It's difficult to have more than just one Koa'ki Meiru out on the field at any given time, though they can still be quite effective if you splash them into another deck full of the same monster type as them so they don't self-destruct.
** It gets worse: the Iron Core itself is completely useless, but is required to use powerful Spell or Traps, so sooner or later you're bound to have to decide between a monster or keeping a way to use your Spell or Trap. Even worse, a few of those need the Core in your ''Graveyard'' instead, so if you're using ''those'', you could end up with no ways to use the ones that need them in your hand.
** All of the above problems are partially addressed by the way the TCG's releases have approached the Rock-Type Koa'ki Meiru monsters. The OCG, at most, has 3 Koa'ki Meiru for each Type, which makes it slightly difficult to try to use a Koa'ki-monster-heavy deck yet avoid the nigh-uselessness of the Core itself. One thing the OCG did bring to the table early was Boulder - a recruiter that never needs to be maintained via core or card-revealing. That, combined with the trend set by Guardian and Sandman in terms of activation negation, led to what may be the most significant thing Koa'ki Meiru has right now - a means of game control via stopping activations. The TCG continued that trend by releasing another maintenance free Koa'ki (Prototype), and another activation-stopping Koa'ki (Wall). This leaves the Rock-Type branch with five members on this side of the Pacific - all of which either help control the game or give you resources.
** Another ideology to use with the Ko'aki Meiru monsters is to throw them into decks among their own types. Bergzak gets excellent mileage among Warrior decks.
*** And then the ability to make and maintain a Koa'ki Meiru deck became a LOT less difficult upon the release of a certain card in Primal Origins called Diamond Core of Koa'ki Meiru. What does this card do exactly that makes Koa'ki Meirus (the Beast-Warrior ones in particular) so viable? It searches ANY KOA'KI MEIRU CARD for one. That not only includes the monsters obviously, but the elusive Iron Core itself, which means that you can also play less of those dead draws. The second effect of Diamond Core? You can Banish it from your Graveyard on your turn, and for the rest of your turn all Koa'ki Meiru monsters cannot be destroyed for any reason. Not only is this good to avoid pesky cards like Torrential Tribute and Mirror Force, it also protects them at the end of the turn from being destroyed from their maintenance costs. Between this, the loads of Beast Warrior support that had been building up recently due to the Fire Fist archetype, and the increasing power of the Rank 4 Xyz toolbox, Beast Warrior Koa'ki Meiru decks are definitely a force to be reckoned with.
** Vennominaga the Deity of Poisonous Snakes requires a lot of set-up; a reptile-based deck, a card like "Damage = Reptile" to easily Summon its predecessor Vennominion, a pre-set "Rise of the Snake Deity" to Summon Vennominaga when Vennominion gets destroyed, a card to destroy Vennominion and perhaps a use of "Snake Rain" to flood your Graveyard with Reptiles to boost Vennominaga's attack. Once all that is said and done, however, Vennominaga is virtually unstoppable since it is ''completely'' immune to all card effects, and it needs only to damage the opponent three times for an instant win. The only hope the opponent has is to either Summon a monster that Vennominaga can't overpower, or to find a way to get those reptiles out of the graveyard (such as with "Zombie World" or "Soul Release").
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Sophia,_Goddess_of_Rebirth Sophia, Goddess of Rebirth]] is considered this for having harsh Summoning requirement of banishing one Fusion, one Ritual, one Synchro and one Xyz on the field. However, once it hits the field, ''all other cards on the field, graveyard and hand are banished except itself''. Not to mention its Summon and effect cannot be negated.
** Probably the most overwhelming example of this trope, however, is [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Creator_God_of_Light,_Horakhty Horakhty, the Creator God of Light]]. To Summon it you have to have all 3 of the Egyptian God Cards on the field...with the "card copying its name" trick ''explicitly negated'' to prevent this from being any easier than getting out 3 monsters who require 3 monsters a piece to Summon. It's ''well'' worth the effort, however, as the mere act of Summoning it cannot be negated, and once it's Summoned, ''you win.''
** There is also the Arcana Force monsters. They're effects rely solely on getting the right flips with a coin, but there are cards that can help a player choose what effect applies. So if a person is smart and uses the cards correctly, they can get monsters that half damage taken, Summon tokens once a turn, or even skip the opponents turn entirely and deal massive damage.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Sephylon%2C_the_Ultimate_Timelord Sephylon, the Ultimate Timelord]], the BigBad boss monster of YuGiOh5Ds, has an impressive 4000 ATK/DEF and can be easily Special Summoned once its condition is met, but it requires 10 monsters in the Graveyard to Summon and only from the hand. This can be accomplished through self-milling tactics (e.g. Lightsworns), but it is still a dead draw early-game. Its effect to Summon a Level 8 or higher Fairy monster as a 4000 ATK beatstick also requires a deck built around exploiting this effect due to the limited pool to choose from, not to mention this leaves the player even more vulnerable to dead draws. Nonetheless, if you can pull this off and remove your opponent's traps, it makes a fantastic late-game finisher that can end the game in a single turn. Plus, you're Summoning {{God}}[[note]]as in the Abrahamic God[[/note]].
** Most players shy away from Ritual Monsters because they require at least three cards to Summon[[note]]and in your hand unless you're using Djinns or Advanced Ritual Art[[/note]] and thus require a deck dedicated to searching them out. Nonetheless, getting them out gives access to the most powerful effects in the game. Some of the most notorious are [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Demise,_King_of_Armageddon Demise, King of Armageddon]], whose field clearing effect plays host to many one-turn kills, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Herald_of_Perfection Herald of Perfection]], which played right, prevents the opponent from doing anything, the Gishki archetype, which eases the difficulty of getting out beatsticks with hand and field control effects, and of course Pegasus's [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Relinquished Relinquished]], which steals opponent's boss monsters to use against them[[note]]and is arguably the easiest Ritual to get out since it is only 1 star[[/note]].
*** One of the new Arc-V sets introduced [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Herald_of_Glorious_Light two]][[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Saphira_the_Dragon_Princess new]] Ritual monsters with insane synergy; the former can negate any inherant Special Summon (i.e. Synchros, Xyz and Pendulums are a waste of time against it) and also any card effect bar a Counter Trap, all for the cost of a single Fairy per negation; while the latter can recycle said Fairies or draw new cards each turn. Having said that, getting both onto the field at the same time can take a while, and needs a strong degree of luck to pull off, but once they are together, you are virtually unbeatable.[[note]] The aforementioned 'Djinn of Ritual' monsters and 'Advanced Ritual Art' help these two immensely. [[/note]]
** Despite the ridiculous amount of resources a well-built Infernity deck has, the cards' effects require you to have no hand, so it is not an easy deck to use. [[http://www.pojo.biz/board/showthread.php?t=1069622 Reading strategy threads]] demonstrate the amount of thought necessary to make a consistent deck that doesn't lead to crippling dead cards in hand or needlessly wasting resources and it is arguably the least flexible archetype in existence. The payoff is huge Graveyard access, a nearly impenetrable defense, and powerful Synchro monsters. In fact, living up to its [[PortmanteauName name]], while Brionac was still legal, they could execute an infinite loop with Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier that could leave the opponent totally resource-less, though [[http://duellikeanidol.wordpress.com/2011/09/19/infernity-loop-combo/ good luck understanding it at first glance]].
* DinosaursAreDragons: Averted. The two have been completely separate categories since the very beginning. Though both focus upon having supremely nasty powerhouses, Dinosaurs tend more towards brute force while Dragons often have devastating effects to go with their physical power.
** Played straight with a new Archetype collectively called '''Evol'''''(ve)'': [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evoltile Reptiles]] turn into [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evolsaur Dinosaurs]] that Xyz into [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evolzar Dragons]].
* DisabilitySuperpower: Infernities are a variation of this trope: Typically not having cards in your hand would be considered a bad thing, as it would require you to constantly draw the cards you need from the top of your deck with no backup plan, but Infernities benefit from this situation.
* DiscardAndDraw: Many cards use discarding as part of a cost for an effect (e.g. [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Magic_Jammer Magic Jammer]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Lightning_Vortex Lightning Vortex]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Hand_Destruction Hand Destruction]], etc.) or the effect itself (ex.[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Graceful_Charity Graceful Charity]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_World_Dealings Dark World Dealings]], etc.)
** Note that certain cards such as Graceful Charity and Dark World Dealings allow the player to draw cards prior or after discarding as an effect.
* DownerEnding: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Trivia:Gagagigo Gigobyte story]] was originally this. Averted when Gagagigo the Risen was released as an Xyz Monster. However, since it's not a normal monster like the rest of the cards, it isn't immediately obvious that he continued the story.
* DragonHoard: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dragon_Treasure Dragon Treasure]] buffs dragons.
* DropTheHammer [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Hammer_Shot on the Goblin Attack Force.]]
* DubInducedPlotHole: Sometimes changing card names from Japanese to English results in the rules getting screwed up since the naming was important.
** A lot of archtypes are marked by an unusual naming in the Japanese version, such as the Equip Card-related Guardian monsters being named "ガーディアン 'Gādian'", while Celtic Guardian uses a different spelling, and other monsters with "Guardian" in their name didn't have it in their Japanese names, like Winged Dragon, Guardian of the Fortress, who was originally "Fort-Protecting Winged Dragon". Thus, when the Guardian support monster "Arsenal Summoner" came out, its card text had to specify it does ''not'' affect cards like Celtic Guardian or Winged Dragon, Guardian of the Fortress. However, then of course numerous ''other'' monsters with the word "Guardian" in their name unrelated to the archetype came out, and Arsenal Summoner's text says nothing about them. In the Japanese version, spelling "Guardian" differently in the archtype name solved all this confusion, but the English version can't do much for it.
** Similar to the above example, the Japanese card "Birdman" was renamed "Harpie's Brother" in English, and ''did'' look like a male Harpie Lady. Of course, since he wasn't, for a long time Harpie support cards had to specify they affect Harpie monsters ''except'' "Harpie's Brother". Finally they just errata'd the problematic card to "Sky Scout" and cut the obsolete exclusionary text from the Harpie support cards.
** A similar problem occurred with the "Archfiend" cards. Their Japanese names are "Daemon" or "Demon", and their support cards accordingly said they affected "Demon" cards. This ''was'' intended to affect earlier, unrelated cards with "Demon" in their names, like Summoned Skull (Demon's Summon) or Axe of Despair (Demon's Axe). For a while the official websites had to specify that these two and numerous other cards counted as "Archfiend" cards for purposes of card affects that affected Archfiends, and now the cards have errata text on them that specify they are considered Archfiend cards.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: Early sets put much more emphasis on normal monsters, with the only real strategy being how to get yourself the best ATK stat to overpower your opponent. Nowadays you'll hardly ever see any normal monsters in a deck unless it's built specifically around them.
** There have been a few changes in the phrasing of certain rules and cards: for example, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Polymerization Polymerization]] didn't actually explain what the card did in its original printing, since that was in the rulebook. After there started to be more ways to get out fusion monsters than just Polymerization, the explanation of the card was taken out and put on the card itself.
* EdibleThemeNaming: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Madolche Madolche]]'s names are puns of French and Italian Desserts.
* EldritchAbomination:
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Worm_Zero Worm Zero]].
*** Taken UpToEleven with its Evilswarm counterpart [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evilswarm_Azathoth Evilswarm Azathoth]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ambitious_Gofer Ambitious Gofer]], who is also a ShoutOut to a [[{{Gradius}} certain shooting game]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Cosmic_Horror_Gangi%27el Cosmic Horror Gangi'el]]
* ElementalPowers: The idea behind monster Attributes, and the specialty of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Charmers Charmer]] archetype.
** BlowYouAway: Wynn
** CastingAShadow: Dharc
** DishingOutDirt: Aussa
** LightEmUp: Lyna
** MakingASplash: Eria
** PlayingWithFire: Hiita
** Also, as the name itself implies, the "Elemental HERO" Archetype, down to the point of every basic Elemental HERO being able to fuse with practically any other, except Neos, which has its own flock of Aliens to fuse with.
* EndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/End_of_the_World A Ritual Spell.]]
** Also caused in the Duel Terminal verse by [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Trishula,_Dragon_of_the_Ice_Barrier Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier]], which plunged the world into an ice age upon release. And now, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Verz_Ouroboros it's]] [[OhCrap back]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Inferno_Tempest Inferno Tempest]] can only be activated when a player takes over 3000 damage from one attack. All monsters in the graveyards, and in both player's decks are [[DeaderThanDead banished.]] The world doesn't get much more thoroughly ended than having everyone who is currently or has previously lived in it disappear from reality.
* EquippableAlly: The Dragon-Type Dragunities are both this. As well as {{Attack Animal}}s.
** Union-type monsters, which can either stand alone as a monster (although they are typically weak) or can be equipped to another monster to give them an additional effect.
* EverythingsBetterWithPenguins: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Penguin Penguin]] archetype.
** Two of the most well-known bounce cards are [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Nightmare_Penguin Nightmare Penguin]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Penguin_Soldier Penguin Soldier.]]
* EverythingsDeaderWithZombies
* EvilTwin: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_counterparts Dark Counterparts]] archetype. They have few to no connections to each other, though DARK is probably the most-supported attribute in the game.
** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Malefic Malefic]] monsters.
* EvilVersusEvil: There is a war between Dark Ruler Ha Des and Dark King of the Abyss. Ha Des tricked Dark King out of his throne with Demotion. Dark King got his revenge, but was killed by the Revived Ruler Ha Des.
* EvilWeapon: WordOfGod says the Equip Spell [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wicked-Breaking_Flamberge_-_Baou Wicked-Breaking Flamberge - Baou]] holds the dark power of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Baou Baou]], its Guardian spirit. When [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Warrior_Dai_Grepher Warrior Dai Grepher]] later wields it, he is overcome by the dark energy. He becomes [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Sakuretsu_Armor a rampaging monster]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Lucius_LV4 transforming more]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Lucius_LV6 and more]] until, at the height of his mutation, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Lucius_LV8 he was completely unrecognizable as his former self]].
* EvolutionaryLevels: Pretty much any monster with LV in its name. Their main schtick is weak cards replacing themselves with stronger and stronger versions of themselves.
** The Evol archetype that will be released in Photon Shockwave sort of fits this too. "Sort of" in that while the younger versions Special Summon older ones, the younger ones don't need to be offered up in order to do so.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Infinite_Cards Infinite Cards]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Effect_Veiler Effect Veiler]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Negate_Attack Negate Attack]].
** Question enforces this. The opponent is forced to name the bottom monster of your graveyard with the name printed on the card no matter how long it is.
* ExactTimeToFailure: Once you activate the "Final Countdown" card, your opponent has exactly 10 of their turns to beat you or you win.
* ExactWords: See LoopholeAbuse further down the page for the many ways those trope can be abused.
** An interesting side-effect of Equip Spell Cards that give Piercing, is that you can inflict damage to your opponent by equipping them to your opponent's monster(s). Then, when your opponent attacks one of your Defense Position monsters with an ATK greater than your monster's DEF, he/she will take the difference. After all, even though it's your opponent's monster, it's your Spell Card, and thus it's your opponent — not ''you'' — who takes the extra damage, due to the wording on the cards.
** Some continuous card effects have linkage to another monster cards such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Future_Fusion Future Fusion]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Call_of_the_Haunted Call of the Haunted]]. However, when the monster is removed from field other than being destroyed, the continuous effect card remains on the field meaninglessly.
*** When [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Premature_Burial this card]] is '''destroyed''', destroy the equipped monster. "That monster" is the primary offender.
** Many cards require, as a cost, that a player "sends a card to the graveyard", usually from their hand or deck. An interesting side effect of a card called Macro Cosmos that states that cards are removed from play instead of sent to the graveyard. If it or a similar card is in play that would somehow prevent you from discarding directly to the Graveyard, you can't use card effects that specify you have to. Cards that simply say "discard" are fine, but "discard to the Graveyard" is out.
** Does a card say that under certain conditions you ''can'' do something? Because that determines if the effect is mandatory or not, which means everything when it comes to chaining cards. Several rules determine the significance:
*** "''If'' this card is ..." means that the card is unable to "Miss the Timing".
*** "''When'' this card is ..." means that the card is capable of "Missing the Timing" if it is not the ''last'' thing to occur.
*** "..., you can..." means that the card is optional and is capable of "Missing the Timing" if combined with "When...". Otherwise, it is still possible, but is also optional.
** You say your card has an effect that triggers when discarded? Does it say it has to specifically be from the deck or hand? Does it specify it has to be discarded ''to the graveyard''? Does it say it has to be discarded due to an opponent's card effect? Does it matter if it's discarded for a cost or by an effect? And as noted above, does it say you ''can'' do something when it gets discarded, because that will determine if the effect is mandatory or not when it gets discarded. This is the main reason Dandylion is Limited, because it gets its effect when it hits the Graveyard no matter how it gets sent there, and the effect is mandatory so you're promised your two tokens no matter what happens.
** Xyz cards have also caused players to take a closer look at cards like Sangan that specify "sent from ''the field'' to the Graveyard", because current rulings are that Xyz Material monsters don't count as being on the field, so Sangan wouldn't get its effect when detached from an Xyz monster.
** Many monsters with a powerful effect or high [=ATK=]/[=DEF=] say "Cannot be normal summoned or set.". However, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Galaxy-Eyes_Photon_Dragon Galaxy-Eyes Photon Dragon]] only says it '''can''' be special summoned with its own effect. There is nothing stopping one from normal summoning it.
* ExplosiveOverclocking: The theme of the cards [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Overworked Overworked]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Limiter_Removal Limiter Removal]].
* EyesDoNotBelongThere: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Big_Eye Big Eye]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Thousand-Eyes_Restrict Thousand Eyes Restrict]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Hundred-Eyes_Dragon Hundred-Eyes Dragon]]
* FallenAngel: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Darklords Darklords]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Marie_the_Fallen_One Marie the Fallen One]].
* FamilyFriendlyFirearms - Many cards with realistic guns in the art had them replaced with lasers, fanciful guns, or knives, with varying success.
** Great example of a card that explicitly has a [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/File:BarrelBehindtheDoor-EE1-JP-R.jpg gun]] on it to [[http://images.wikia.com/yugioh/images/8/8a/BarrelBehindtheDoorDR1-EN-R-UE.jpg less obvious]]. Plus the gun in the original was a burgler's.
* FanService - Averted. Cards which seem to gear towards this are edited for the TCG.
* FantasyKitchenSink
* FeatheredFiend: A number of monsters, but the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Blackwings Blackwings]] stand out.
* FlamingSword: Wielded by [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Flame_Swordsman Flame Swordsman]]. Also, the Spell Card [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Salamandra Salamandra]].
* FragileSpeedster: Some decks focus on getting out monsters as quick as possible, [[ZergRush swarming the field]] (like the Harpies, the Blackwings, Frogs, and so on). To balance this out, most of them do not have very high attack power.
** Xyz monsters are much easier to Summon than Synchro monsters or Fusion monsters, but a lot of them don't have terribly high attack points comparatively, and most of them can only use their effect once or twice because they need to detach the monsters used to Summon them. If they are revived from the graveyard they can't use their effect at all! Most of them are meant for quick-and-dirty support rather than something to decisively end the opponent.
* FrogsAndToads: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Frog These fellas.]] The Frog archetype is usually WeakButSkilled; they are mostly-all low-level monsters with sub-par attack, but have ''devastating'' support effects, like "Des Croaking" which blows away all cards controlled by the opponent.
* FusionDance: Fusion was a gameplay feature since the early days of the game, but the Elemental [=HEROs=] are entirely based around fusing with one another. There are dozens of potential combinations present. To a lesser extent, the newer Gemknight archetype is also based around fusion.
* GameplayAndStorySegregation: Many cards have slightly different effects between the anime and the physical card game; what would be a game-breaker might be Nerfed when it becomes real, or vice-versa. Sometimes the rules are a little different as well; Summoning monsters in face-down defense position hasn't happened in the anime since the first season, but it's still an important part of the rules of the real game.
** As for a more direct example, Normal monsters. Take [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Maiden_of_the_Moonlight Maiden of the Moonlight]] for example. ''Powers beyond mortal comprehension'', huh? That 1500 ATK certainly says otherwise! Sure there are SOME examples where it fits, like the famous Blue-Eyes White Dragon (in terms of ATK, there are not many monsters that can stand up to it), but its just ridiculous for the most part. In fact, this is what made Shapesnatch a MemeticBadass.
* GangOfCritters: Seen [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Law_of_the_Normal here]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Big_March_of_Animals here]].
* GateGuardian: In the ''Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game'', there's "Gatekeeper", a mechanical creature who seems to guard dimensional gateways. There's also "Gate Guardian", the Paradox Brothers' ace monster in the [[Anime/YuGiOh anime]]. Presumably it guards gates with its mighty power.
* GladiatorGames: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gladiator_Beast Gladiator Beasts]], a set of monsters that are ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, and has the gimmick of [[SwitchOutMove "tagging out"]] with each other after a battle. Bonus points for {{Konami}} [[ShownTheirWork showing their work]] by using the real gladiator types and weapons/battle tactics for most of the cards, as well as real-life Roman figures for the namesakes of the most powerful Beasts. .
* GlassCannon: The Lightsworns were designed as this with a combo of FragileSpeedster. Most of their monsters are quite powerful and a good Lightsworn deck will probably win very quickly...or not win at all. This is because almost all of them send cards straight from your deck to the graveyard at the end of the turn, meaning your deck will burn itself out after a while.
** There's also quite a few monsters that have high attack points but pathetic defense points. The mighty Rainbow Dragon has 4000 ATK and 0 DEF, for example. Similarly, the Inverz/Steelswarm monsters all have 0 DEF. If a clever player runs cards that can switch attack and defense positions or stats, or outright nuke said low-defense monsters, these monsters are toast.
* GodSaveUsFromTheQueen: Ruin, Queen Of Oblivion and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Allure_Queens Allure Queens]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Queen_of_Thorns Queen of Thorns]] if you run anything other than Plant-type.
* GottaCatchEmAll: This is impossible in real life (unless you're insanely rich and have a lot of spare time on your hands, and even then [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tyler_the_Great_Warrior Tyler the Great Warrior]] is truly one-of-a-kind), but it's ''quite'' possible if you're playing any of the various Yu-Gi-Oh video games that are released every year.
* GratuitousEnglish: At this point, the OCG probably has more cards and booster packs with English than Japanese names. A good deal of Japanese cards also have English names.
* GratuitousJapanese: In the first few booster packs, UDE's policy was that [[KeepItForeign cards with English names would have their names translated into Japanese]]. They've since stopped, but some card names are left untranslated.
* GuideDangIt: Now that there are thousands of individual cards in the game ''(with updated rulings, to boot,)'' keeping track of these can be a pain. Fortunately, there are official tournament judges and [[TheWikiRule even a wiki]] to help with this, but there are some things that will not be immediately obvious to a player that requires him to double check from an official source to confirm it. For example: Cards like [[AnAxeToGrind Axe Of Despair]] and [[ShockAndAwe Summoned Skull]] are now considered to be "Archfiend" cards ''(the newer prints even say so on them)''. If you had the old versions of these cards, how were you supposed to know?
* HarpingOnAboutHarpies: The Harpie Lady monsters.
* HeadlessHorseman: Headless Knight and Ghostrick Dullahan.
* HealingShiv: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Monster_Reborn Monster Reborn's]] international artwork depicts a dagger that [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin resurrects monsters]]. [[note]] The Japanese version shows a simple ''ankh''. [[/note]]
* {{Hermaphrodite}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Yubel Yubel]]
* HolyHandGrenade: Remember Horakhty, the Egyptian god that won the day against Zorc in the original anime and manga? [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Creator_God_of_Light,_Horakhty She's a card now]], and her effect is like this. Good luck Summoning her, though...
* {{Homage}} / ShoutOut
** The game started off as a homage to ''Magic: the Gathering'' for the ''Manga/YuGiOh'' manga.
** Since the game is created by Creator/{{Konami}}, it's only natural that a few of their other game series would make some appearances. A few examples...
*** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tactical_Espionage_Expert Tactical Espionage Expert]]. Physically he appears to be a CompositeCharacter of Snake and Raiden, the two protagonists of the ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid'' series, and his name comes from the series' subtitle: "Tactical Espionage Action." Rumor has it this card was created in response to Hideo Kojima expressing interest in the game, which also earned him the affectionate nickname Hideojama, after the series' Ojama monsters,
*** There's a whole mess of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Konami_Arcade_Games cards based on Konami's arcade shooters]]. Notably {{Gradius}} appears without even having its name changed to hide the reference.
*** There are a few not-so-subtle references to ''GanbareGoemon'', including [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Lady_Ninja_Yae Lady Ninja Yae]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Goe_Goe_the_Gallant_Ninja Goe Goe the Gallant Ninja]].
*** The protagonist of ''GetsuFumaDen'' appears [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Getsu_Fuhma as a card]].
*** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Vampire_Killer Vampire Hunter]] is another extremely obvious shoutout, this time to ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'', complete with whip.
*** The card [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Star_Drawing Star Drawing]] is a fairly obvious reference to ''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}'', which was published by Konami in Japan.
*** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ultimate_Baseball_Kid Ultimate Baseball Kid]] is a reference to Konami's ''VideoGame/LivePowerfulProBaseball''.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Raigeki_Break Raigeki Break]] is an obvious one to GreatMazinger
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Six_Samurai The Six Samurai]] archetype seems to be intended as an homage to ''Film/SevenSamurai''. Shien is meant as an Homage to Oda Nobunaga.
** The Deformer archetype (Morphtronic in English to avoid copyright issues) is a collective reference to Transformers and other giant mecha shows for kids in Japan such as "Golden Warrior Gold Lightan".
** Look at [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Super_Vehicroid_-_Stealth_Union Super Vehicroid - Stealth Union]]. Now look at [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qZRSvbcePtU this.]]
** According to WordOfGod, the Arcana Force monsters were based on the works of Creator/HPLovecraft.
*** Also, in the set of cards based on Tarot Greater Arcana, the card representing The World has the power to, effectively, stop time by giving you potentially unlimited turns -- a shout out to Dio Brando's famous stand of the same name from ''Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure''.
** There is a card called {{Gradius}}. There is also a card called [[GanbareGoemon Goe Goe the Gallant Ninja]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Genex_Ally Genex Ally]] are incredibly similar to the original ''VideoGame/MegaManClassic'' characters.
** The ability of Gladiator Beast monster to switch places with another Gladiator Beast from the deck after battling has been unanimously dubbed "[[ProfessionalWrestling Tag Out]]" by the playerdom.
** The Elemental Heroes, or at least the earlier non-Fusion ones, are based on various American superheroes (Avian / [[DCComics Hawkman]], Bladedge / IronMan, Necroshade / Comicbook/{{Spawn}}).
*** The Elementals weren't the only ones: Destiny Heroes, two in particular, were based on two chracters in classic Novels (Double Dude/ Literature/DrJekyllAndMrHyde; Dreadmaster/ TheManInTheIronMask) and one Evil Hero is based on one of the ComicBook/{{X-Men}} (Malicious Edge/Wolverine).
*** And the Masked Heroes as a whole are nods to the ''Franchise/KamenRider'' franchise.
** More specifically, the Inzektor monsters design, and their overall effect of a stronger armoured Inzektor over a lighter faster Inzektor is a shout out to ''Series/KamenRiderKabuto''.
** Several cards use characters from other ''ShonenJump'' series.
** While the ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' TCG is itself based off MagicTheGathering, very few cards from the former actually reference the latter... except for the Prophecy archetype. The Prophecy Destroyer's art style is very Magic-esque, while Wheel of Prophecy could be an {{Expy}} or CaptainErsatz of Ajani Goldmane, a Planeswalker from the Magic universe. Temperance of Prophecy can also be said to resemble Jace Beleren.
*** And the other way around works, too. Check out the Silent Swordsman and Silent Magician. Now look at Kargan Dragonlord and Guul Draz Assassin... and Chandra Nalaar's Japanese Duel Deck art.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Drill_Warrior Drill Warrior]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Drill_Synchron Drill Synchron]] are suspiciously [[ThisIsADrill drill-happy]], but it's not hard to squint vaguely and see the [[Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann Gurren Lagann]] influence, particularly in the drill arm and its pose.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Garlandolf,_King_of_Destruction Garlandolf, King of Destruction]] resembles a certain [[TheLegendOfZelda King of Evil]]. His [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ritual_of_Destruction Ritual Spell]] also bears an uncanny resemblance to a temple from that series.
* HouseRules: Two common variations are based on the Forbidden/Limited list: Traditional, which allows banned cards (up to one of each), and Mega-Banned, which completely disallows cards that are on the list at all. Another type sometimes seen in competitive play is the Sealed Deck duel, which gives both players identical decks, but no one knows the contents.
* HumongousMecha: Many of the Machine-type monsters, especially some of their Fusions.
* AnIcePerson: The "Ice Barrier" archetype and related cards.
** Also, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO_Absolute_Zero Elemental HERO Absolute Zero]]
* InstantWinCondition: Several, listed on the UsefulNotes page.
* InTheEndYouAreOnYourOwn: Regardless of what the TV series have you believe, friends don't mean much in a standard 1-on-1 game.
* InvulnerableKnuckles: An important gameplay ''aversion.'' To explain: If your monster attacks an opponent's defense-position monster, and the defender has more DEF than the attacker has ATK, it's the attacker who takes damage; think of it like punching a brick wall with your fist. This is one of the reasons why monsters can be Summoned in face-down defensive position; the attacker doesn't know what he's in for. Some decks can be built around this, with defensive monsters that flip themselves back down and "Shifting Sands" in play that lets you randomize the positions of your face-down monsters.
* JokeCharacter:
** The Toons. Portrayed as a wacky subset of monsters in the game [[AwesomeButImpractical that can attack Life Points directly, but usually have to wait a turn to do so, which hampers their playability a lot.]]
** A lot of cards are not only useless, but they seem to have been made for nothing more than novelty. For example, there's Sanwitch, a Level 6 Fusion Monster with 2100 ATK. There's no reason to ever use it, and even if you wanted to, you can't -- Witch of the Black Forest has been banned from play ever since the Banned List was created, and Sangan has been on and off it and was on it when Sanwitch was made.
** Later on, the flavor text of Normal Monsters borders on AffectionateParody. Here's [[http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120720032851/yugioh/images/6/6e/Rabidragon-PHSW-EN-C-1E.png Rabidragon]], [[http://images.wikia.com/yugioh/images/1/16/Wattaildragon-GAOV-EN-C-1E.png Wattaildragon]], and [[http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120623102418/yugioh/images/f/fb/AlligatorsSword-TU08-EN-R-UE.png Alligator's Sword]]. Such things made [[http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20061226053609/yugioh/images/thumb/4/4c/Shapesnatch-PGD-NA-C-1E.jpg/300px-Shapesnatch-PGD-NA-C-1E.jpg Shapesnatch]] a MemeticBadass for its "terrible power" (and as a Level 5 1200/1700 monster, yes, it's very terrible).
** Seeing as most of the game is based on situational cards many cards which seem to be jokes can easily become [[LethalJokeCharacter deadly]] in the right circumstances, Sanwitch for example makes it very easy to get additional fusion material and the Toons can run through your opponents life points really quickly and are hard to get rid of. The Skull Servant started out as nothing more than fodder that most players wouldn't even look at but now has enough buffs and support cards to make it a valuable part of deck if you have the right cards...
* KillEmAll: Some cards are able to wipe out everything on both sides of the playing field (or just all cards on the opposing side). A couple of cards take it even further by also wiping out every card in the players' hands!
* KillItWithFire: Is the strategy with a lot of Fire/fire-themed cards, such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO_Flame_Wingman Elemental HERO Flame Wingman]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Volcanic_Doomfire Volcanic Doomfire]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Achacha_Archer Achacha Archer]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Backfire Backfire.]]
* KillSat: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Satellite_Cannon Satellite Cannon]]
* KnightTemplar: Vylons are so focused on creating a world of PerfectPacifistPeople that they are willing to make a WorldOfSilence to accomplish it. [[LogicalFallacies By killing everyone, apparently.]]
* KrakenAndLeviathan:
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Levia-Dragon_-_Daedalus Levia-Dragon - Daedalus]] and its evolved form [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ocean_Dragon_Lord_-_Neo-Daedalus Ocean Dragon Lord - Neo-Daedalus]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evigishki_Gustkrake Evigishiki Gustkrake]]
* TheLastOfHisKind: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Last_Warrior_from_Another_Planet The Last Warrior from Another Planet]]
* LeeroyJenkins: Some cards have compulsory attack effects (i. e. Berserk Gorilla, Battle Mania).
* LeetSpeak: There's a card called Mind Haxorz. Seriously.
* [[LethalJokeItem Lethal Joke Card]]: There's a bunch of these. The Ojamas, three exceedingly weak monsters with no attack points, got a number of support cards that let them drastically turn the table on the enemy. "Gift Card" increases your opponent's life by 3000, but if you combo that with "Bad Reaction To Simochi", or have "Nurse Reficule The Fallen One" on the field, which turns healing into damage, you've just dealt a ''serious'' blow to the opponent. "Skull Servant" was famous for being an extremely weak card (in fact, most video games give you credit if you can win a game with the Skull Servant) but can act as fuel for "King of the Skull Servants," who becomes increasingly more powerful the more Skull Servants are in the Graveyard.
** Grinder Golem and Inferno Tempest. Grinder Golem Summons a 3000 attack point monster on your opponents side of the field and gives you two tokens with 0 attack points. Now attack the Golem with one of your tokens, take 3000 damage, and activate Inferno Tempest. It removes every monster in both players decks and graveyards from play. You may even be able to perform an OTK by activating D.D. Dynamite which does 300 damage for every card of your opponents that is removed from play.
*** Grinder Golem has the bonus of having low defense points, so you can Summon it to the opponent's field in defense position, then use it as fodder for a monster that needs to destroy a monster by battle to activate an effect, while also providing tokens for other effects.
** Foolish Burial sends a monster straight from your deck to the graveyard, which would seem like a bad idea on its own, except if you combine that with anything that lets you revive a monster, you've just hand-picked a monster from your deck to be Summoned onto the field. There's a reason this card is limited to one per deck.
*** Foolish Burial also sets off Dandylion, which Summons two Level 1 tokens when sent to the grave. This is especially useful when Synchro Summoning. If you Summon Debris Dragon after doing this and use it to revive Dandylion, you can now Synchro Summon any Dragon-type Synchro Monster between level 5 and 9, and then gain another two Level 1 tokens. All this from two cards.
**** Using the above strategy and a Level 1 Tuner, you can Summon Formula Synchron and Stardust Dragon, and then Shooting Star Dragon, which has 3300 ATK and a myriad of powerful effects. If you use Glow-up Bulb as the Level 1 Tuner, it can revive itself and you can play a second level 2 synchro monster, allowing you to play Shooting Quasar Dragon. So basically you just played a 4000 ATK monster with three cards, and drew an extra one thanks to Formula Synchron. All 4 of the setup cards, Foolish Burial, Dandylion, Formula Synchron, and Debris Dragon, have since been limited.
* LightIsGood: Most monsters of the LIGHT attribute seem to be heroic, but...
** LightIsNotGood: seems to be the theme of the Arcana Force monsters and most of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Worm Worm]] Archetype.
** The Vylons are an interesting example. In the story they teamed up with the Lavals, Gishki, Gusto, and Gem-Knights in order to beat back the Steelswarms. This ultimately leads to [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Vylon_Disigma Vylon Disigma]] defeating them. But as it turns out, those sets were only working together to beat the Steelswarms and prior to that were also fighting each other. The Vylons wish for a perfect existence for everyone, but they now see that's impossible. So they've decided to use Disigma to KillEmAll.
** Despite Santa Claws's Japanese name referencing the Devil, he is in the LIGHT Attribute.
* LimitedSpecialCollectorsUltimateEdition: Quite ''many'' cards are this, which kind of diminishes its value a bit; but there some among these that really are worthy of its title, examples are cards that are actually sold separately in one big deluxe package: ''Shinato of A Higher Plane'' was this at first. Other examples are Special Summons hyped in the AnimatedAdaptation and TheMovie, expect to only get them in special events or packed with another product of the franchise (usually a VideoGame).
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters
* LoopholeAbuse: Many older cards are worded in such a way to allow this as the game and its strategies have progressed and evolved in ways the card game back then couldn't have foreseen. For example, Mind Control lets you take control of an opponent's monster, but it can't attack or be Tributed. When it was first released it didn't have a lot of uses, mostly just Fusion (which was rarely used) and getting a monster out of the way. Then came Synchros and Xyz, which state their Summoning methods don't actually count as Tributing...and so it was Mind Control is now Limited.
** Similar to Mind Control, Instant Fusion - pay 1000 Life Points to special Summon a Level 5 or lower Fusion monster from the extra deck, but it can't attack and is destroyed during at the end of the turn. Unless you need Tribute fodder, entirely useless, since none of the Level 5 or below Fusions are any good even if they weren't only around for one turn. Then Synchros came, and this card, combined with a Tuner, let you Summon pretty much any Synchro monster you wanted. And then came the [=Xyz=] cards, which can do just about the same thing.
** Two old school revival cards have this. Premature Burial states that when it is destroyed, the monster it revived is destroyed. Its effect says nothing about the monster dying if the card is just removed from the field, most famously by returning it to the hand to be played again. Call of the Haunted meanwhile says that when the monster it Summoned is destroyed the card itself also goes, but as with Premature Burial it doesn't go if the monster is removed from the field, leaving Call of the Haunted face-up and useless, unless you have something like Scrap Dragon. Be sure to pay attention to if a card specifically says ''removed from the field'' or ''destroyed'', it makes a huge difference.
** The Wind-Ups. Each of them have effects that can only be activated once while on the field. But if it's sent to the grave/banished zone, then you can re-use the effects. This led to the infamous "Wind-Up Loop" in the March 2012 format, where unless your opponent had Effect Veiler or Maxx C, you basically made them discard their entire hand without any drawback to yourself.
** Tour Guide From the Underworld Summons a second monster when she comes into play, with lots of limitations on what you can do with it. But, of course, it doesn't forbid you from using the monster with mechanics that were added to the game ''later'', like Xyz Summons...
** Dark World monsters are all about this. They (and a later archtype with similar mechanics, Fabled) get their effects when they're discarded to the Graveyard. However, if you discard them for a cost, say for a card like Magic Jammer, their effects don't trigger. This has resulted in many Dark World support cards that let you do something, ''then'' you discard a card from your hand, because then the discarding is part of the card's effect, not the cost, and the Dark World monster's effect will trigger properly.
** There's also numerous cards that cause things to happen at certain times during the turn. This makes some cards like Solomon's Lawbook (skip your next Standby Phase), and Dimensionhole and Interdimensional Matter Transporter (banish a monster until a particular turn phase) {{Crouching Moron Hidden Badass}}es because they allow you to avoid various effects by "dodging" turn phases. For the latter, there's Spirit Monsters, which have a universal effect that specifies they return to your hand during the End Phase of the turn they're Normal Summoned or flipped face-up. So if you banish them from the field and they return later or find a way to skip your End Phase, they get to stay on the field because the End Phase of the turn you played them has passed, and the return effect says nothing about them returning to the hand on subsequent turns.
** Guardian Dreadscythe is summoned when a Guardian Eatos to be destroyed to be Special Summoned, and it can only be summoned by its own effect. The key words are [[ExactWords the last part]]. In fact, it has a second summoning condition: when is sent from the field to the Graveyard, you must discard 1 card to bring it back. Duelists have exploited this fact by using Inzektor Exa-Beetle, which equips 1 monster from the Graveyard and can detach an Xyz material to send one card on both players' side of the field to the Graveyard. In fact, it is arguably easier to get Dreadscythe out this way than its intended summoning condition.
** Machina Fortress has the effect that you can discard Machine-type monsters from your hand with total levels of 8 to Special Summon it from the hand or Graveyard. However, Machina Fortress is itself a Machine, and thanks to the rulings and wording of its effect, you can ''discard Machina itself for its own effect cost'', and then Special Summon it from the Graveyard when its effect resolves. And to boot, Machina Fortress is Level 7, meaning the last level needed can come from any Machine-type monster in the game outside [=XYZs=]. In practice, it's effect might as well read "You can discard 1 Machine-type monster to the Graveyard tio Special Summon this card from your hand."
** Several cards refer to affecting a card with a particular word or phrase in its name, for example the Vehicroid support cards specify they affect "roid" monsters. However, this means those same cards can be used on Dark Jeroid, and any future card with the word "roid" even if they aren't Vehicroids.
** Several cards, most famously Harpie Lady and her variants, say in their text "This card is always treated as Harpie Lady". This refers to purposes of deck construction too -- Harpie Lady, Harpie Lady #1, #2, #2, and Cyber Harpie, all count as the same card, so you can only have three total. In turn this has led to cards with effects reading like "This card's name is treated as while it is on the field and/or in the Graveyard", bypassing the card limit rule so support cards for that specific monster are easier to use. The Harpies, Cyber Dragon, and the Frogs, all abuse this to the extreme.
* LuckBasedMission: No matter how you build it, running an Arcana Force deck inevitably turns into this.
** Also, Lightsworns. Lightsworn cards send cards from the top of the Deck to the Graveyard, and abuse this with plenty of monsters whose effects activate in Graveyard. Of course, many key cards, including the GameBreaker Judgment Dragon need to be in the hand to use. Running Lightsworns is just hoping you get the right cards in your Graveyard and the rest in your hand. Just as Arcana Force, you can try to build them to get around this, but most of the time it's better not to.
* LuckilyMyShieldWillProtectMe: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Millennium_Shield Millennium Shield]]. Big Shield Gardna too, considering his pose.
** Also any monster that cannot be destroyed in battle counts in a meta sense, as aside from piercing damage, they will 'shield' you from damage.
* LuckManipulationMechanic: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Second_Coin_Toss Second Coin Toss]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dice_Re-Roll Dice Re-Roll]].
* {{Lunacy}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mystical_Moon Mystical Moon]]. It powers up Beast-Warrior-type monsters.
* MadeOfExplodium: Scrap monsters are always either being destroyed by their own effects or the effects of their support cards. Fortunately, their secondary effects usually kick in after this, allowing you to recycle other Scrap cards.
* MadScientist: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Kozaky Kozaky]] and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Magical_Scientist Magical Scientist]]. Some card artworks suggest that these two are actually best buds.
* MagicalLand: Well, it's only advertised as a [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Magical_Citadel_of_Endymion citadel]], but if you look, it houses an entire little kingdom/village inside the magical barrier.
** Arguably, the entire monster world would count, as it's the home of all sorts of fantastic creatures.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Secret_Village_of_the_Spellcasters Secret Village Of The Spellcasters]].
* MagicKnight: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Breaker_the_Magical_Warrior Breaker the Magical Warrior]], ''[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Magician_Knight Dark Magician Knight]]'' and the ''[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Paladin Dark Paladin]].
* MagicMirror: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Fiends_Mirror Fiend's Mirror]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Copycat Copycat]]
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dragons_Mirror Dragon's Mirror]]
* MagikarpPower: A lot of the LV monsters are weak in their initial forms but replace themselves with much, ''much'' stronger versions. One of the biggest Magikarps in the game is Winged Kuriboh, who, on its own, simply prevents you from taking damage for a turn. There's a card that can replace it with a "Winged Kuriboh Level 10", which makes every monster your opponent has on the field explode and damage them equal to the total ATK of the monsters destroyed, usually more than enough to finish them off and win the Duel.
** There are also cards that slowly build up power over time - they gather tokens, so many turns need to pass, etc - with strong effects that trigger once they're charged up.
** As a meta example, a lot of old weak archetypes (Gravekeepers, Batterymen, Frogs) will often receive new support cards in sets released years later that suddenly make them much more viable.
** The Ojama own this trope. As if Ojama Delta Hurricane!, which obliterates your opponent's hand and field but requires the three Ojama brothers as an activation condition, weren't enough, the more recent additions to the family, Red and Blue, can mass-Summon fellow Ojamas from the hand and tutor Ojama cards from the deck respectively. Last but not least, Ojama Country can Summon Ojamas from the grave and flips the attack and defense of all monsters on the field. Run with Ojama King and other StoneWall monsters and...
* MagmaMan: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Lava_Golem Lava Golem]]
* ManEatingPlant: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Man-Eating_Plant Literally]], but note that it is considerably less frightening than your usual ManEatingPlant because it only has 800 attack points; on the other hand, we have [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gigaplant the Gigaplant]].
* MarriedToTheJob: Poor poor [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Kozaky Kozaky]]...
* MaskOfPower: Not too many, but enough to count as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Masks an archetype]].
* MeaningfulName: Earthbound Immortals. Yeah, they're really '''Earth'''bound (as in bound to the ''Field'' Spell!).
** Several monsters with the piercing ability have names with stabbing and/or cutting tools in them, such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Blackwing_-_Bora_the_Spear Blackwing-Bora the Spear,]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO_Bladedge Elemental HERO Bladedge,]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gravekeeper%27s_Spear_Soldier Gravekeeper's Spear Soldier,]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mad_Sword_Beast Mad Sword Beast.]]
* MechanicalEvolution: Machine King. Its youngest form is labeled as being from the year ''3000 BC!'' Interestingly, the chronologically earlier forms seem to have been created as an afterthought.
* MechanicalMonster: Many machines resemble living creatures, like the Cyber Dragon line. On the flip side of things are the Scrap monsters, which clearly ''look'' mechanical but technically count as just about everything except machines--insects, beasts, dragons and so on.
* MemeticHandGesture: Some players have adopted the practice from [[Anime/YuGiOh the anime]] of placing their hands over their decks to signify surrendering the duel, though it's obviously not sufficient to just do this for it to legitimately count as a surrender.
* {{Metagame}}: Try to run a deck ''without'' cards like ''Heavy Storm'', ''Lightning Vortex'', or defensive traps such as ''Scrap-Iron Scarecrow'' and ''Mirror Force'' and count the time until someone says you ''can't'' run a deck without them.
** The Forbidden/Limited lists that change every 6 months tend to both reflect and change the Metagame.
* {{Metaplot}}: There was an attempt to have one for a while, based on the artwork of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gagagigo_(series) Gagagigo]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Inpachi Inpachi]], Goblin cards, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Trivia:Royal_Writ_of_Taxation Royal]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Royal_Cards Cards]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Different_Dimension Different]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Trivia:Warrior_Lady_of_the_Wasteland Dimension]] cards, as well as various monsters appearing in the art of other cards. The lack of flavor text on most cards meant that any story that might have been present was completely lost. More recent cards still reference each other in the artwork, but there doesn't seem to be any attempt to build a coherent plot. A fair chunk of {{fanfic}} is devoted to spinning a coherent story out of the various references.
** The new Duel Terminal arcade game's card archetypes seem to have this going for them, as evidenced by a few cards both within [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ally_Mind the]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ally_of_Justice_Clausolas Duel]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mist_Valley_Thunder_Lord Terminal]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Battle_of_the_Elements outside]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Worm_Call it]]. [[note]]That stuff Mist Valley Thunder Lord is holding? They're the broken pieces of a [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ally_of_Justice_Catastor Catastor]].[[/note]]
* [[MeteorOfDoom Meteor Of]] [[strike:Doom]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Meteor_of_Destruction Destruction]]
* MightyGlacier: Some decks require a lot of set-up before you can bring out the big offensive guns. One example is the Destiny [=HEROs=], who are almost all defensive monsters that help the player increase their hand and field presence. This is because their two trump card monsters, Plasma and Dogma, require three Tributes to Summon (but are so powerful they can really hamstring the opponent once finally out).
* MindControl: One of the main features of the Aliens is infecting opposing cards with A-counters (called "A-cells" in lore) which they can then take control of. Mind control effects are often limited in some way, so if you can avoid destroying your stolen monsters, [[IKnowYoureInThereSomewhereFight they might come back to you]].
** There is also [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mind_Control Mind Control]].
*** There was also once [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Change_of_Heart Change of Heart]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Brain_Control Brain Control]], but they're now forbidden.
* MonsterClown: A literal example! Mystic Clown... Dream Clown... Crass Clown... Saggi The Dark Clown... as you might have guessed none of these guys are very pleasent. Luckily, most clown cards are fairly weak or have no effects. Most.
* MookMaker: Anything that generates Tokens regularly, like "Goka, the Pyre of Malice".
* MushroomMan: There are cards specifically named Mushroom Man #1 and #2.
* MutualKill: Both monsters are destroyed when they have the same ATK and attack each other.
* MyDeathIsJustTheBeginning: A number of the new Psychic types from Extreme Victory practically exist to be sent to the graveyard. (Namely [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Serene_Psychic_Witch Serene Psychic Witch]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Silent_Psychic_Wizard Silent Psychic Wizard]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Hushed_Psychic_Cleric Hushed Psychic Cleric]].) [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Overmind_Archfiend Overmind Archfiend]] also has this going for it, although it's powerful in it's own right.
* MythologyGag: Alligator's Sword and several other Normal Monsters released in Legendary Collection 4: Joey's World had their flavor text localized to [[BrooklynRage Brooklyn accent]].
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: [[NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast/YuGiOhCardGame Has its own page.]]
* {{NEET}}: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Slacker_Magician Slacker Magician]], who is called the "Shy NEET Magician" in Japan.
* NegateYourOwnSacrifice: The popular Stardust Dragon can sacrifice itself to prevent some other card on the field from being destroyed, but it can also bring itself back every turn it does this.
* {{Nerf}}ed: A really big Nerf occurred when Synchro monsters were introduced. The "Fusion Deck" became the "Extra Deck," and instead of having an unlimited number of Fusion monsters in it (barring the "no more than three with the same name" rule) players were now limited to 15 cards (Synchro or Fusion monsters). This is because Synchro Monsters are generally unspecific as to how they can be Summoned and it would be too game-breaking to allow an unlimited number of them in there, but this was a ''major'' blow to Elemental HERO decks, since there are way more than 15 different possible Elemental HERO fusion combinations.
** Since they can't re-write the rules as written on a card once it's been issued, sometimes Konami will limit how many of certain powerful cards you're allowed to have in your deck, sometimes just 2, 1, or none at all. These "limited/forbidden" lists change every six months as new cards are introduced that change the balance of the game.
* NeverSayDie: Any monster with the word "Death" in its name has it changed to "Des" as a deliberate transliteration, hence "Death Frog" is "Des Frog" (and "Death Koala" is "Des Koala").
* NewSeasonNewName: After [[Anime/YuGiOh5Ds 5D's]] cards began appearing in the game, "5D's" was added to the name of the game in the box logo and in some other places. The same for ''Anime/YuGiOhZEXAL''.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: Quite a few cards can be used to Special Summon a more powerful monster upon the death of the first. For example, Rise of the Snake Deity can be used upon the death of Vennominon, the King of Poisonous Snakes to Summon Vennominaga, the Deity of Poisonous Snakes which gets 500 ATK for each Reptile in the graveyard, can't be the target of abilities, can come back from the dead with the sacrifice of a Reptile from the graveyard and causes an instant victory in 3 attacks.
** Yubel is probably the best example: If you attack it, then ''you'' take damage instead and Yubel itself survives. If you destroy it, then it becomes stronger. The only way to destroy it is... [[SheatheYourSword waiting]]: Yubel needs a sacrifice each turn to stay alive, and being destroyed this way won't bring up its stronger forms. Unless, of course, your opponent abuses the many reusable Tribute fodders in the game; then you're screwed.
** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Meklord Meklord]] archetype is considered this if you are playing a synchro deck.
** Also, Berserk Dragon can only be Summoned by a spell card that can only be used if one of your Level 8+ monsters is destroyed.
** The soon to be released Shaddoll archetype from Duelist Advent. Its main power card, Shaddoll Fusion, gets its massive power if it's able to grab its Fusion Materials straight from the deck. What condition must be maintained for this to happen? The opponent must have a Special Summoned monster on their field. About 8-10 years ago, this would be too situational. Now? Well, if you're playing the game now take a look down at your current deck. Chances are it relies on Special Summoning. Congrats, chances are you're going to allow Shaddoll decks to do a tapdance on your face. There's really no surprise as to why this archetype is dominating the OCG after ONE SET.
* NiceHat: [[http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20070401121621/yugioh/images/b/bd/GreatPhantomThiefDR1-EN-C-UE.jpg Great Phantom Thief]] sports quite the piece.
** Also, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Cosmo_Queen Cosmo Queen]].
* {{Ninja}}: A whole lot of them, in fact. A trio of them even serve as a ShoutOut to Konami's popular video game series ''Ganbare Goemon''
** In Recent Packs, Ebisu has been added as "Masked Ninja Ebisu", which means you can now have the Main 4 characters from ''Ganbare Goemon''
* NonHumanUndead: Quite a few, including the recent variants of legacy cards (i. e. Summoned Skull -> Archfiend Zombie Skull, Red Eyes Black Dragon -> Red Eyes Zombie Dragon, etc.).
* NonIndicativeName: Some cards have them. For example, you wouldn't really think that a card called [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Psychic_Overload Psychic Overload]] would be a good thing, but it can actually be extremely helpful.
* NothingIsScarier: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/The_Thing_in_the_Crater The Thing in the Crater]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dweller_in_the_Depths Dweller in the Depths]].
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shiny_Black_%22C%22 Shiny Black "C"]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Maxx_%22C%22 Maxx "C"]].
* NotQuiteDead: Numerous cards allow other cards to return from the Graveyard (either to the field or the player's hand), though not so much that DeathIsCheap. In fact most Zombie monsters have effects like this.
* NotTheIntendedUse: A number of instances. For example, Barrel Behind the Door was initially meant to bounce back damage done to you by effects. It works just as well bouncing non-cost damage from your cards to your opponent.
** One of the most interesting examples is [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/G.B._Hunter G.B. Hunter]]. As the name says, it was designed to defeat Gladiator Beasts, which return to the Deck to activate their effects. Turns out, she's great at preventing ''your'' monsters from returning to the Deck ''or'' Extra Deck. Monsters like, say, the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Majestic_Star_Dragon Majestic]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Majestic_Red_Dragon Synchros]], any Elemental Hero Fusion Monster with Neos in its name, or, ironically, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gladiator_Beast_Octavius Gladiator Beast Octavius]].
** One of the most unfortunate examples was the Forbidden [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Royal_Oppression Royal Oppression]]. It was meant as an anti-meta card to punish the highly Special Summon reliant {{Metagame}}. Instead, decks ended up using it to get out their big plays and then activated it to prevent the opponent from being able to respond as effectively. The card ironically lived up to its name as it primarily benefited top-tier decks and those who went first even more.
** Equip cards that give monsters the "piercing" ability (doing damage to the opponent when attacking a weaker defense position monster) can be equipped to the ''opponent's'' monster, with the result that the ''opponent'' takes damage from attacking defense monsters.
* NukeEm: Shown in the artwork of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Final_Destiny Final Destiny.]] Not to mention it is one of the very few cards that lets you wipe out the whole field.
* NumericalThemeNaming: The Karakuri archetype. In Japan, their names are actually numbers: "Karakuri Soldier Nisamu," for example, is written with the kanji 弐参六 (236). In the US, the dual nature of their names is retained by translating the kanji as both a ''model'' number and the actual reading thereof (or a variation); e.g. "Karakuri Soldier mdl 236 'Nisamu'".
* OneHitPointWonder: All except a dozen or so monsters only need one attack to be destroyed, regardless of how low or high the difference is.
** And a few of them have effects where they are destroyed after they are attacked, regardless of ATK or DEF points.
* {{Orochi}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Yamata_Dragon Yamata Dragon]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evil_Dragon_Ananta Evil Dragon Anata]]
* OrphanedSeries: The physical card game is still ongoing, but the video game releases stopped short of the introduction of Xyz monsters and the Zexal series; this, after Konami released at least one or more Yugioh video games each year like clockwork.
** [=Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL World Duel Carnival=] has been announced for release in 2014 for the Nintendo [=3DS=].
* OurAngelsAreDifferent: In fact, some of them are [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Synthetic_Angels Synthetic.]]
* OurDragonsAreDifferent: Mostly western dragons, though a few eastern dragons also appear. Some dragons stretch the definition of "dragon," like Black Rose Dragon, which appears to mostly be a giant rose with thorny vines and a dragon head.
** And now the first Arc-V set introduces a new type that is this trope within the game— Wyrm (Genryu)[[note]]Legendary Dragon[[/note]] monsters, who are incompatible with Dragon-type support cards.
* OurMonstersAreWeird: Oh, yeah...
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Vampire Vampire]] archetype.
* OxymoronicBeing- Behold the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Anteatereatingant Anteatereatingant!]]
* PaletteSwap: Quite a few monsters appear to be the same type of creature as another card, but with their colors edited. Examples include [[http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20060819223033/yugioh/images/0/06/Kuriboh-MRD-NA-SR-UE.jpg Kuriboh]] and [[http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20081030193110/yugioh/images/a/ad/WretchedGhostoftheAttic-TP8-EN-C-UE.jpg Wretched Ghost of the Attic]], [[http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130906210510/yugioh/images/d/d5/SkullServant-LCYW-EN-UR-1E.png Skull Servant]] and [[http://img4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120203022113/yugioh/images/7/7c/TheWanderingDoomed-TP18-JP-C.jpg The Wandering Doomed]], and [[http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20090329050310/yugioh/images/a/a9/RootWaterLOB-NA-C-1E.jpg Root Water]] and [[http://img2.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20071217211409/yugioh/images/d/d7/HighTideGyojin-SRL-EN-C-UE.jpg High Tide Gyojin]].
* PersonalityPowers: Light-based monsters are often benevolent, or [[KnightTemplar overbearing]] and intimidating. Earth monsters are usually [[DumbMuscle unsubtle]], but [[CloserToEarth balanced and grounded]]. Dark monsters are often sinister, but sometimes more "crafty" than evil. (Especially if you associate dark with "magic"). Wind decks are often fast but flighty, and not always dependable; the vast majority of Spell and Trap destroying cards are named after wind effects. Fire decks love roasting the opponent and the "Backfire" card causes them all to be MadeOfExplodium (by burning the opponent when a Fire monster is killed), or else are highly aggressive and hotheaded, burning through their own cards. Water monsters can be weak with surprising HiddenDepths and clever utility.
* PettingZooPeople: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gladiator_Beasts Gladiator Beast]] monster archetype, and Beast-Warrior monster types in general.
* PhysicalGod: Obviously not to us, but within the cards there are the Egyptian Gods, Wicked Gods, Sacred Beasts, Earthbound Immortals, and Aesir monsters.
** More recent editions include Master Hyperion and his Agents of the "Lost Sanctuary" structure deck, as well as the Fire Kings of the "Onslaught of the Fire Kings" structure deck.
*** To elaborate, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Master_Hyperion Master Hyperion]] orders around the Agents, which are (very, very loosely) based on various Roman Gods such as Earth, Mars, and Jupiter.
*** Meanwhile, the Fire Kings are all referred to as "Avatars", with the most powerful amongst them being [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Fire_King_High_Avatar_Garunix Fire King High Avatar Garunix]].
* ThePlague: With a handful of virus cards to play with, very few of them don't dish out immeasurable damage to the opposing player. Crush Card Virus, Epidemic Eradication Virus, Deck Devastation Virus, and Cell Explosion Virus. Did I mention they have ominous names as well?
* PoisonMushroom: "Parasite Paracide" is a card that gets inserted into the opponent's deck face-up. When they draw it, it gets Summoned to the field and they take damage. As a side-effect, it also causes all opposing monsters to count as insects (this was back when the main Insect strategy was to take advantage of an opponent's monsters also counting as insects).
** "Mushroom Man #2" damages its controller at the start of the turn, but can be shifted to the opponent at the cost of some of your own life points. This card becomes an exercise in playing "hot potato" with the opponent and it's not very popular these days, since they could just tribute it for a Tribute Summon or use it for a Synchro Summon.
** "Lava Golem" and "Volcanic Queen" are both very powerful monsters with high ATK--but you Summon them to the opponent's side of the field. The trick is that they burn their controller each turn (and you get to Tribute opposing Monsters to Summon them, getting rid of some of their cards), so if you're playing a stalling-based deck with indestructible monsters, they're stuck with something they can't easily get rid of that damages them each turn.
* PowerAtAPrice: Low-level monsters with high stats tend to have negative effects (and/or positive to the opponent).
** [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent Gene-Warped Warwolf]] and [[OurDragonsAreDifferent Alexandrite Dragon]] are exceptions to this rule, however.
** [[GratuitousEnglish Koa'ki Meiru]] run on this. Not only they have high stats, they have powerful ''positive'' effects. Their only downside is that they [[ExplosiveOverclocking self-destruct at the end of your turns unless you keep them maintained]].
* PowerEqualsRarity: ...and the rare cards get pretty expensive.
** As of now there's only twelve Level 12 cards in a TCG composed of ''thousands'' cards, and arguably for [[GameBreaker a very good]] [[OneHitKill reason]].
* PowerLimiter: Part of the backstory behind [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gearfried_the_Iron_Knight Gearfried The Iron Knight]]. When it gets [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Release_Restraint released]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gearfried_the_Swordmaster look out.]]
* PowerupLetdown: Aside from the inherent almost Ritual-level difficulty of summoning a Chaos Xyz monster, several of them have effects that are worse than the original. The best example is [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Number_C92:_Heart-eartH_Chaos_Dragon Number C92: Heart-eartH Chaos Dragon]]. [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Number_92:_Heart-eartH_Dragon The original]] can banish nearly every card played in an opponent's turn, has protection from being destroyed by battle while redirecting battle damage to the opponent, and can revive itself with 1000 ATK times every card banished when destroyed with Xyz material. Its [[ClippedWingAngel Chaos form]]? Loses battle immunity (while only having 1000 ATK to boot), gives your monsters LifeDrain (which rarely makes up for the damage you take) and negates effects for a turn, likely only once. Not to mention it's hard enough to get the original out in the first place.
* PreciousPuppies: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Outstanding_Dog_Marron Outstanding Dog Marron]]
* PrecisionFStrike: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Oh_F!sh! Oh F!sh!]], indeed!
* PrestigiousPlayerTitle: You are a "Duelist".
* PutOnABus: Rather interestingly {{Lampshade| Hanging}}d. Since a number of cards have been put on the "forbidden" list Konami has released a series of cards depicting their bus ride, primarily focusing on Sangan: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mistake Mistake]], depicting them all getting on the bus, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tour_Bus_To_Forbidden_Realms Tour Bus to Forbidden Realms]], depicting part of the ride and presumably the point where Sangan realizes the bus isn't coming back, and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shared_Ride Shared Ride]] with a crying Sangan being consoled by the angel from Graceful Charity.
* RealRobot: About half of all machine monsters. The other half are {{Super Robot}}s.
* RegeneratingHealth: As long as you have "Marie The Fallen One" in your graveyard, you gain 200 LP each Standby Phase. A lot of other cards can heal as well, but they have to be on the field, where they are wide open to attacks or effects.
* ReptilesAreAbhorrent: The Alien, Venom, Worm, and Reptilianne archetypes. In fact, it's because of this trope that the Aliens and Worms (which are StarfishAliens) are classified as "Reptiles," because they're so ''wrong''.
* ResetButton: The now long-banned card "Fiber Jar" resets pretty much everything in the duel except for Life Points and cards that were removed from play. Its only purpose is to draw out duels and make them even longer, so it was banned to prevent this.
* {{Retcon}}: A few cards have been renamed outright in order to make them fit better with later-released archetypes: "Amazon Archer" became "Amazoness Archer," "Oscillo Hero #2" became "Wattkid," and the various "Heroes," such as the "Elemental Heroes," are now all officially "HEROs," since there are ''five different sub-archetypes'' which use the keyword.
* RetiredBadass: The set "Storm of Ragnarok" heavily implies that the support monsters for the Six Samurai archetype were the original members of the group.
* RevolversAreJustBetter: In every country besides the U.S., Barrel Dragon is known as Revolver Dragon. One look at the original [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Artworks:Barrel_Dragon OCG artwork shows why]].
* RiddlingSphinx: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ordeal_of_a_Traveler Ordeal of a Traveler]] forces your opponent's monsters to win a guessing game if they want to attack you; the art depicts a traveler being questioned by a sphinx.
* RidiculouslyCuteCritter: Many low-level monsters, but special mention goes to the many Kuribohs, the Charmers' familiars, and the Neo-Spacians' Chrysalis forms.
** The Watt and Naturia archetypes are made up almost exclusively of these.
* RockMonster: The Rock-type.
* SacredBowAndArrows: Fairy-types have the Silver Bow and Arrow weapon to power up. The Fairy-types Skelengel and Number 102: Star Seraph Sentry wield bows in their artwork, and in some video games other Fairies are depicted as fighting with bows.
* {{Samurai}}: The "Six Samurai" archetype and all its support.
** Before them, we had the "Sasuke Samurai" cards, though this only consists of four monsters.
* SatanicArchetype: While not outright stated to be the devil, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Diabolos,_King_of_the_Abyss Diabolos]] seems clearly inspired by the devil. If his name (devil in Greek) and the title "King of the Abyss" did not tip you off already, there's also a [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Lightray_Diabolos LIGHT version]] of him, indicating he did at one point fall from grace or possibly the opposite.
** The manga, on the other hand, has a much more straight example. See there for said example.
* TheScapegoat: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Scapegoat Scapegoat]]
* SceneryGorn: A lot of cards have this, including a few (non-field) magic and trap cards.
* SceneryPorn: Some Field spells are just ''gorgeous'', and if not, the designs are at least ''very'' intricate and detailed.
* SchizoTech: Everything from stone clubs to SteamPunk ancient robots to the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Perfect_Machine_King Perfect Machine King]].
* SchmuckBait: The illustration of [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Reckless_Greed Reckless Greed]] shows a greedy man reaching for a treasure chest that is clearly over a trapdoor.
* SealedEvilInACan: Seeing the destruction the war was causing, the Ice Barriers decided to [[IdiotBall unseal]] Trishula, the strongest of the Ice Barrier Dragons. It did [[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt NOT]] [[ResetButtonEnding end well]].
* SealedEvilInADuel: Emulated in [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Different_Dimension_Gate Different Dimension Gate]]. And yes, we see the pun in 'duel'.
* SequelEscalation: Remember the old days where Summoning more than one monster in one turn is hard to do? Now Summoning five monsters with over 2000 ATK in one turn while still having a healthy hand size is completely normal to be seen.
** So much that you could parody the infamous ''WebVideo/YuGiOhtheAbridgedSeries'' scene by matching two decks from two different eras.
*** Blackwings especially get that treatment when it's your first time playing them. If they don't FTK you, they must've gone first (and therefore could not attack).
*** Synchro Monsters in general are this. Now Summoning your deck's ace monster is usually done mostly with monster effects and is usually Summoned in your first or second turn. In the olden days, you were considered lucky to Summon any thing over a level six without deliberately stalling or using Foolish Burial + Monster Reborn.
* SeriesMascot: Kuriboh and Winged Kuriboh have been this for years, Stardust Dragon for the [=5D's=]-era. Number 39: Utopia seems to be shaping up to be the one for the current [=ZEXAL=] era.
** Kuribon and Kurivolt are the variations for [=5D's=] and [=ZEXAL=]. They haven't been used nearly as much as the first two, being just special cards while Kuriboh and Winged Kuriboh had spirit forms. In addition to the Kuribohs, each series protagonist has a monster typically used most by them. Dark Magician, Elemental Hero Neos, Stardust Dragon, and Number 39: Utopia. These monsters always have 2500 attack and 2000 defense.
*** There is also another Kuriboh expy from the first series: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wretched_Ghost_of_the_Attic the Wretched Ghost of the Attic]].
* SetBonus: Most archetypes rely on internal support.
* SharedLifeMeter: Life Points work sort of like this. Monsters battling each other remove Life Points from each player, and when a player's Life Points reach zero they lose, along with all the monsters they were controlling.
* ShockAndAwe: Thunder-type monsters. Additionally, a lot of cards that deal with destroying monsters happen to be named after or themed after electricity, like the Thunder Monarch, Raigeki and its variants, Elemental HERO Thunder Giant/Evil HERO Lightning Golem, and so on.
* SiblingRivalry / SiblingYinYang: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/White_Magician_Pikeru White Magician Pikeru]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Ebon_Magician_Curran Ebon Magician Curran]].
* SigilSpam
** The [[GratuitousEnglish Koa'ki Meiru]] monsters all feature their emblem somewhere on their person.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Gusto Gusto]] monsters all carry a metal amulet with a shuriken design on it.
** Most of the cards that use the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Spell_Counter Spell Counter]] mechanic carry the sigil for that theme.
** The Emblem for the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Six_Samurai Six Samurai]] appears in the background of every card in the theme, however the only member to wear the emblem is "Legendary Six Samurai - Shien".
** All the X-Saber archetype have the emblem of an X somewhere on their person. Even more so, the XX-Saber all wear red capes as well has having the emblem.
*** Every post-Trishula Duel Terminal Archetype features a logo of some sort.
* [[SkillGateCharacters Skill Gate Cards/Effects]]: Some cards/effects prevents other cards from being destroyed by battle and/or card effects such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Beelze_of_the_Diabolic_Dragons Beelze of the Diabolic Dragons]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Mechquipped_Angineer Mechquipped Angineer]]. However, skilled players usually main [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evac cards that]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Dimensional_Prison can get]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Number_101 rid of]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Castel other cards]] without destroying them.
* SoLastSeason: Elemental Hero decks took a major hit when Synchro Monsters came out, and Synchro Monster support (and decks) took a huge hit when Xyz came out.
** Formerly banned cards such as Tsukuyomi received this effect since their effects are far less devastating in a faster metagame where multiple Summons in a turn are prevalent.
** Duelist Advent, and if the anime is any proof, the Yugioh Arc-V era seems destined to subvert this. How so? Well, the number one archetype in the OCG right now is Shaddolls. Their claim to fame? FUSION SUMMONING. That's right, yeah, not just for HEROs and Glad Beasts anymore. Also in that set is the Yang Zing, an archetype that's made up of an entirely new Type of monster (Wyrm) and they are based around Synchro Summoning. And lastly you have the Satallarknights which are based around Xyz Summoning. Ironically enough, the hallmark Mechanic/Summon of Arc-V, Pendulum Summoning, is completely underpowered at the moment and isn't taking all too much room in sets. While there isn't an archetype released for it, there is a Ritual Monster released in the first two Arc-V sets as well and lastly it happens that these sets are in the middle of Konami's new Mega Monarch support. Basically, every type of summoning is getting love now, instead of brushing everything to to the side to support the new hallmark.
* SpiderTank: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Launcher_Spider Launcher Spider]] takes this trope literally.
* StarfishAliens: The Alien archetype. Some of the bigger ones border on EldritchAbomination. One of them is even {{cosmic horror| story}} by name! Also, they are the true masters of turnabout. Zeta Reticulant and Greed Quasar are not ''technically'' of the Alien archetype, but are still in the same visual class. The Worms of the Worm archetype are even ''more'' Starfishy, ranging from hideous blobs to rampaging chitinous monstrosities. The only common feature they have is a [[MoreTeethThanTheOsmondFamily toothy, vertical mouth]].
* {{Steampunk}}: The Ancient Gear archetype, though bordering on ClockPunk.
* {{Superhero}}: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO Elemental HEROs]]
** AntiHero: Their counterparts, the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Destiny_HERO Destiny HEROs]]
** VillainProtagonist: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Evil_HERO Evil HEROs]]
** HenshinHero: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Masked_HERO Masked HEROs]]
* SuperMode: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki//Assault_Mode /Assault Mode]] for certain Synchro Monsters
** And several for LV Monsters and cards like Vampire Genesis
** Stardust Dragon and Red Dragon Archfiend also have a small handful of other advanced forms.
** Classic cards Blue-Eyes White Dragon and Red-Eyes Black Dragon have a number of other, more powerful forms as well.
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute: Whenever a card is declared Forbidden for being too powerful, Konami tends to release a watered down version of it. A couple of straight examples would be "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Rescue_Rabbit Rescue Rabbit]]" for "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Rescue_Cat Rescue Cat]]", and "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tradetoad Tradetoad]]" for "[[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Substitoad Substitoad.]]"
** [[IncrediblyLamePun Wouldn't the latter be a Suspiciously Similar Substitoad...?]]
* TakeMeInstead: There are a few monsters that let you send them to the graveyard to protect your other cards from being destroyed, Stardust Dragon being a famous example.
* TakingTheBullet: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/My_Body_as_a_Shield My Body as a Shield]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Astral_Barrier Astral Barrier]] have YOU doing this to protect your monsters, so to speak. This is also a recurring theme with the Six Samurai cards; each of the Six can destroy themselves to prevent another one on the field from being destroyed, or to protect Great Shogun Shien.
** Players can subvert this in the case of Astral Barrier by coupling it with [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Spirit_Barrier Spirit Barrier]], where you and your monsters effectively protect each other.
* TakingYouWithMe: Several ways. Activating Self-Destruct Button is one. Playing Ring of Destruction on a monster whose attack is more than both player's Life Points is another. Flipping a Morphing Jar when both players have less than 5 cards in their deck? [[CrowningMomentOfFunny Indeed.]]
* TarotMotifs: The Arcana Force monsters are based on tarot cards, including names and numbers, though not all 22 made the cut. There were also a couple of minor arcana thrown in: Ace of Cups, which randomly may let you or your opponent draw extra cards, and the anime-only Ten of Swords.
* ThatCloudLooksLike: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Cloudians A bunch of monsters!]]
* ThemeNaming: Many archetypes work this way. Those that don't just have common visual themes.
** Some examples: Dark World monsters have a warped version of a color for a name ("Gren," "Goldd," "Silva," "Broww,"). The [[StarfishAliens Worms]] have names beginning with a different letter of the alphabet, from A ("Worm Apocalypse") to Z ("Worm Zero"). Gladiator Beasts all have Roman or Greek themed names.
* TieredByName:
** The game has many monsters that act as variants of the same base monster, though not always stronger, with the connection being signified by a partial name change, such as Dark Magician to Dark Sage or Dark Magician Knight. Played straightest with the Gagagigo family, Gagagigo's card lore tracing his evolution into Giga Gagagigo, then Gogiga Gagagigo.
** There's also the LV monsters, which are more this trope combined with PowerLevels and/or CharacterLevel. Examples include [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Armed_Dragon Armed Dragon]] and its more powerful forms [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Armed_Dragon_LV3 Armed Dragon LV3]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Armed_Dragon_LV5 Armed Dragon LV5]], etc., or [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Silent_Swordsman Silent Swordsman]] and its more powerful forms, among others.
** The Chaos Xyz monsters (Including the Chaos Numbers) also follow this pattern. Examples of the first type include "Number 39: Utopia/Aspiring Emperor Hope" which becomes "Utopia Ray" or if Ranked up becomes "Utopia Ray V" or "Utopia Ray Victory". Example of the variation include "Norito the Moral Leader" becoming "[=CXyz=]: Simon the Great Moral Leader".
* TimeBomb: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Blast_Sphere Blast Sphere]], [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Adhesive_Explosive Adhesive Explosive]], and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Jigen_Bakudan Jigen Bakudan]], though going by its rulings, the latter's effect is instantaneous.
* TimeMachine: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Time_Machine As seen here.]]
* TimeToUnlockMoreTruePotential: The basis of the Gemini monsters, who must be Normal Summoned after already being on the field to gain their effects. There are cards to bypass this limitation, however, which may overlap with EleventhHourSuperPower.
* {{Toon}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Toon The Toon Monsters]].
* TransformingMecha: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Morphtronics Morphtronics]] archetype.
* TrapMaster: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Trap_Master He destroys traps rather than setting them, though.]]
* TricksterArchetype: The Jars. The majority of them have game-breaking effects that can turn entire strategies upside-down...and the artwork indicates that they do it all with [[ItAmusedMe a huge, goofy smile on their face.]]
* TrueCompanions: The Six Samurai, who can sacrifice each other if another one would be destroyed.
* UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Last_Turn Last Turn]], which pits two monsters against one another to decide the winner of the duel.
* UltimateUniverse: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Duel_Terminal The Duel Terminal]] verse, with a cohesive storyline, (akin to MagicTheGathering or TabletopGame/DuelMasters) streamlined rules, and even an UltiMatum [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Duel_Terminal_-_Pulse_of_the_Trishula analogue]].
* UnderwearOfPower: The Ojamas. All of them.
* UndyingLoyalty: "Skull Dog Marron" is an ''animated skeletal dog'' which wandered off 1,000 years ago, and has been waiting for its master to come looking for it.
* UnPerson: Konami has been taking the focus away from Synchros and Tuners ever since the debut of ZEXAL, all in favor of the new Xyz mechanic. The former two have also been hit hard in the banlists, in contrast to the latter. The still running 5Ds manga is the last refuge for new Synchros and Tuners for the real life game.
* UnrealisticBlackHole: Dark Hole.
* UnskilledButStrong: A well-built deck that resolves around normal monsters are rather powerful at the cost of having no effects. It should also be noted that they are immune to cards that affect Effect Monsters.
* UpToEleven: Monsters that are Level 8 are usually the strongest Monsters you're likely to see in a deck, and they usually don't have an ATK of over 3000. Any effect monster with 3000 or higher ATK or a Level of 9 or higher usually has much stricter Summoning conditions or an AchillesHeel, but they make up for it by being really powerful.
* UselessUsefulSpell: As a result of some cards being banned, there are quite a few cards that are just non-functional right now. Namely: Avatar of the Pot, Call of Darkness, Call of the Grave, Dedication through Light and Darkness, Elemental HERO Neo Bubbleman, Gryphon Wing, Guardian Elma, Jar Robber, Musician King, Mystical Beast of Serket, Sanwitch, and Spirit of the Pot of Greed.
* VendorTrash: A high proportion of any given booster pack set will be this, especially in the early sets flooded with weak monsters that had no effects. Though as the game evolved, support cards such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Instant_Fusion Instant Fusion]] (used for easy Xyz Summons) and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Advanced_Ritual_Art Advanced Ritual Art]] gave those previously ignored cards playability.
* VillainousRescue: When your opponent attacks one of your Fiend-type monsters, you can send that Fiend to the graveyard, as well as one in your hand, to bring out [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Darkness_Neosphere Darkness Neosphere]], a monster with 4000 attack and defense that can't be destroyed in battle!
* TheVirus: Ekibyo Drakmord returns to its owner's hand (so long as it's not destroyed or the equipped monster is removed from the field), allowing it to spread to other monsters.
** "DNA Surgery" can be seen as this, too, as its effect changes all monsters on the field to a single type (chosen by the cards activator). "DNA Transplant" does the same thing, but with Attribute in place of type.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Parasite_Paracide This]] little [[IncrediblyLamePun bugger]] as well.
** [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Tribe-Infecting_Virus Tribe-Infecting Virus]]
** The Alien Archetype is based largely on using this to weaken monsters.
** The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/lswarm Evilswarm]] Archetype is entirely composed of previous monsters from the Duel Terminal world [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Infestation_Infection corrupted by some kind of virus]], leaving the infected as mindless beasts of destruction.
* PowerOfTheVoid: Several monsters' effects that simply remove cards from the field evoke this, such as [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Caius Caius the Shadow Monarch]], which banishes a card from the game (and all similar variations of this effect), and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Steelswarm_Girastag Steelswarm Girastag]], which sends a card to the grave. Both cards evade effects that protect cards from destruction, which is considered very powerful in the game.
* WaveMotionGun: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wave-Motion_Cannon Wave-Motion Cannon]].
* WeakButSkilled: In general, there are a lot of cards with low attack and defense points that have powerful effects. There's even a few archetypes based around WeakButSkilled cards, like the Frogs, the Watt monsters, Ojamas, and so on.
* WeaponOfChoice: The common theme for the Equip Spell Card-based Guardian archetype.
** ArcherArchetype: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Ceal Ceal]]
** AnAxeToGrind: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Grarl Grarl]]
** {{BFS}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Baou Baou]]
** BoomStick: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Kay%27est Kay'est]]
** CoolSword: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Eatos Eatos]]
** DualWielding: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Tryce Tryce]]
** KnifeNut: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Elma Elma]]
** SinisterScythe: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Guardian_Dreadscythe Dreadscythe]]
* WhatMeasureIsANonHuman: The only possible explanation for how Konami thought changing the human torture victim to a goblin made [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Card_Artworks:Nightmare_Wheel Nightmare Wheel]] more acceptable.
* WindUpKey: This [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Legendary_Wind-Up_Key spell card]] and [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Wind-Up the Archetype]] it supports
* WingedHumanoid: The Harpie Lady archetype, [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Elemental_HERO_Avian Elemental HERO Avian]], quite a few of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Blackwings Blackwings]], some of the monsters that look [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Absorbing_Kid_From_The_Sky like]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shining_Angel angels]] and Yubel, or at least before she goes OneWingedAngel...
* WingedUnicorn: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Crystal_Beast_Sapphire_Pegasus Crystal Beast Sapphire Pegasus]]
* {{Wolfman}}: [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Lycanthrope Lycanthrope]], and any with "Warwolf" in the name.
* TheWorfEffect: The [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Millennium_Shield Millennium Shield's]] flavor text states that it is rumored to be able to block any kind of attack. Despite this, all of the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Shield_Crush other]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Kaminote_Blow cards]] that depict the shield show it in the process of shattering.
* XanatosSpeedChess: "Toolbox" decks that are designed to be as adaptable as possible fall under this trope. Certain archetypes or well-built custom decks allow the user to Summon a Monster that they need at will to respond to whatever the opponent has out. "Legendary Six Samurai" and "Gladiator Beast" decks are particularly good at this.
* XtremeKoolLetterz: Invoked by the Xyz Monsters. The original Japanese literally didn't correspond to any actual word known, [[VideoGame/HexyzForce aside from a term from a completely unrelated ATLUS game]], and that term literally spawned a response of "it couldn't POSSIBLY BE THAT" out of the fanlators. That situation, combined with how Konami has made text errors in its printings before (re: the Zombie-Type's OCG name being "Undeat" rather than Undead thanks to such a mistake), made folks think of "Exceed" as a term that not only fit thematically but suffered from a hearty amount of AscendedFanon. Cue the TCG release in which the very Konami article on the first [=ZeXal=] structure Deck included the name and the following line:
--> 'It's pronounced ik-seez'
** Apparently the name is a reference to spatial coordinates, which would fit the backstory in which the Xyz monsters came through a black hole, originating from a dimension of reverse-time.
** If you're curious, the initial fan translation (which is so ubiquitous that it is still in use by most fansubbers and lots of fans) was "Exceed Monster". This transliteration was supported by the end of YuGiOh5Ds, where characters "exceeded their limits" roughly once an episode, coupled with the hypothesis that in-universe the Exceed (Xyz) Monsters were an alternative to Synchro Monsters.
* YinYangBomb: Chaos monsters, which are generally {{Game Breaker}}s. To Summon them, you merely have to remove from play one Light and one Dark monster out of your graveyard. A {{nerf}}ed version of them, the Sky Scourges, require a much heftier and more specific version of the same cost (three dark fiends and one light fairy, or three fairies and one fiend).
** Later, there were also other Monsters also released with the word "Chaos" in their name; most of them involve some sort of combination of a Light and Dark monster. Chaos Goddess and Elemental HERO Chaos Neos are a couple of them.
** There's also "Light and Darkness Dragon," which counts as both a light and dark monster; its main deal is that it blocks ALL card effects from happening, but becomes weaker each time it does; when it inevitably gets destroyed, you can choose any other monster in your graveyard to resurrect (and then blow up all OTHER cards you control). So it's protection, destruction, sacrifice and rebirth all at once--perfect for a creature of both light and darkness.
** "Elemental HERO Darkbright," a fusion between a light and dark Elemental HERO monster. It has a powerful piercing attack, but makes itself vulnerable immediately afterwards by shifting to defense position. If it gets killed, though, you get to destroy an opposing card, too.
* YinYangClash: Many examples, but one of the biggest is the ongoing and escalating Duel Terminal battle originally between the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Steelswarm Steelswarm]] and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Vylon Vylon]], which has now become a battle between the corrupted [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/lswarm Evilswarm]] and the [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Constellar Constellar]].
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: And red...and green...and some purple...
** The Dark Magician in particular is notable for having a different hair color in each of his five seperate artworks.
** The Charmers' hair corresponds to their attributes.
* YoureNothingWithoutYourPhlebotinum: Some cards have variable ATK and DEF, represented with a "?" instead of numbers. If they get hit with something that negates their effect, their ATK and DEF become zero. So they are literally nothing without their powers.

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