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Tabletop Game / Yu-Gi-Oh! Rush Duel

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Yu-Gi-Oh! Rush Duel is a Yu-Gi-Oh!-derived Collectible Card Game released by Konami in 2020, alongside the tie-in Yu-Gi-Oh! SEVENS anime. Mechanically, Rush Duel is a highly simplified and sped up version of Yu-Gi-Oh!. However, TCG and OCG cards are not legal in Rush Duel, meaning that the two games are completely distinct and incompatible.note 

Gameplay-wise, Rush Duel is the most similar to the Speed Duel format in the original Yu-Gi-Oh!. There are only three monster and spell zones, and there is no main phase 2. However, that's where the similarities end.

In Rush Duel, both players start with the standard 8000 LP and can have the standard-sized 40-60 card deck. Both players start with four cards. There are currently three major differences between standard Yu-Gi-Oh! and Rush Duel:

  • During the Draw Phase, the turn player draws until they have five cards in their hand (the player who goes first can also draw during the first turn); if they have five or more cards in their hand, they draw one card.
  • During the main phase, players can Normal Summon/Set as many monsters as they want (Tribute monsters require tributes as normal).
  • An exclusive type of monsters known as Maximum Monsters are available in Rush Duel. A Maximum Monster consists of three individual monsters (a center monster, a left monster, and a right monster) that can be summoned as individual monsters, or Maximum Summoned together as a single monster. Once Maximum Summoned together, the three monster cards will occupy all three monster zones, and are treated as one single monster with a very high Maximum ATK (written on the center monster), which cannot be set to Defense mode. The effects of all three individual monsters remain individually usable.

Cards in Rush Duel share the same general attributes as the cards in TCG/OCG, but are redesigned to be more visually clear. As such, they are not interchangeable with TCG/OCG cards, and many Rush Duel exclusive cards and archetypes exist.

The printed version of Rush Duel is currently exclusive to Japan and Korea; however, the Yu-Gi-Oh! SEVENS video game that features Rush Duels, Yu-Gi-Oh! RUSH DUEL: Dawn of the Battle Royale!!, released worldwide on December 7th, 2021, featuring the first official localizations of Rush Duel and content from the SEVENS anime. A second video game, Yu-Gi-Oh! RUSH DUEL: Dawn of the Battle Royale!! Let's Go! GO RUSH!!, based on Yu-Gi-Oh! GO RUSH!!, was released in Japan the next year on December 1, 2022. Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links implemented a modified version of Rush Duel as a playable format alongside the introduction of a SEVENS world; this variant uses rules inspired by the related Speed Duel format from the OCG/TCG, including the use of Skill Cards and smaller LP and Deck sizes.

This game provides examples of:

  • Actionized Sequel: Rush Duel downplays the effect combo-based gameplay in standard Yu-Gi-Oh! in favor of mass summoning and quick beatdowns.
  • Affectionate Parody:
    • The "Cat" archetype features cat-themed spoofs of "Eyes" Dragons used as the ace monsters of past Yu-Gi-Oh! characters. It includes Blue-Eyes White Cat (from Kaiba's Blue-Eyes White Dragon), Red-Eyes Black Cat (from Joey's Red-Eyes Black Dragon), and Odd-Eyes Twin Tail Cat (from Yuya's Odd-Eyes Pendulum Dragon).
    • The "Baseball" archetype is Yuma's "Number" and "Onomatopoeia" archetype cards recast as baseball players.
    • The "Jersey" series of cards takes a bunch of classic monsters that have "Soldier" in their names such as Penguin Soldier and Black Luster Soldier and turns them into a group of jersey wearing hooligans called the "Soljerseys".
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • Rush Duel cards are explicitly designed to be more readable. Monster Levels are printed in big, bold numbers, monster stats are similarly big and bold and are placed directly in the center of the card, and card effects have their requirements and effects split up. Incidentally, the increased real estate allows cards to be printed with larger and clearer artwork.
    • One of the more subtle rule nuances compared to Master Duels is the change to how effect cost and effect activation interact with each other. The fact that cost and effect are now split up does away with the horribly-confusing "if" and "when" distinctions in the OCG/TCG; furthermore, the rules of Rush Duel go out of their way to specify that effect cost and effect activation are now considered to occur with the same timing, unlike in Master Duels. This helpfully avoids any rule nitpicking when responding to the activation of a card effect since it's virtually impossible to miss timing.
    • A large number of effect types were completely cut to reduce the game's ruling complexity. Monster and Spell Effects are now either manually-activated effects usable only in its controller's turn (the equivalent of Ignition Effects) or Continuous Effects; there are no Quick Effects or Quick-Play Spells that can be activated during the opponent's turn. Spell Cards that remain on the field, such as Field Spells or Equip Spells, exclusively have continuous effects and do not have activated effects. All Traps now have conditions involving the opponent's actions (so no conditionless free timing activations like Raigeki Break), but none trigger in response to another card effect. Taken together, these changes functionally cuts effect chaining from Rush Duel.
  • Art Evolution:
    • Many classic cards that are reprinted for Rush Duels have their art redrawn to make them look less dated. Compare the original Master Duel printings of Gazelle, King of Mythical Beasts and LaMoon to their new artwork.
    • The general art quality of Rush Duel cards is extraordinarily high, even by Yu-Gi-Oh! standards. This is especially pronounced with the game's exclusive "Over Rush Rare" rarity, a card rarity where the artwork pops out of the frame to cover nearly the entire card except for the effect text.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Maximum Summoning allows you to bring out some of the biggest monsters in the game with a powerful array of effects due to them being composed of three separate cards. However, the requirement for actually pulling off a Maximum Summon is to get three specific cards in your hand at the same time, which is far from easy even with the increased draws allotted by the Rush Duel ruleset. It doesn't help that any pieces you're saving up in your hand directly hinder the number of cards you get to draw every turn, and they tend to be quite weak if used on their own. Later Maximum Monsters, beginning with Doomblaze Fiend Overlords Despairacion, address the issue by giving the monster's components decent stats and effects that don't require Maximum Mode, making them usable as regular monsters and reducing their dependence on Maximum Summoning.
    • In addition, all Maximum Monsters occupy all Monster Zones, and unless you want to tribute it with a Level 5 or 6 Monster, all Monster Cards you have in your hand are stuck in your hand outside of costs for effects.
  • Balance Buff:
    • Dark Magician Girl has her effect increased from 300 ATK to 500 ATK per Dark Magician in either players' Graveyards, identical to her manga counterpart. This is likely to compensate for the fact that Dark Magician is a LEGEND card in Rush and thus there can only be up to two of them in play in a duel.
    • Harpie's Pet Dragon gains 900 ATK for each Harpie Lady Sisters on the field in addition to its existing 300 ATK for each Harpie Lady. Additionally, Harpie Lady Sisters was given a Pragmatic Adaptation into a Maximum Monster consisting of three 2100 ATK components that can be Tribute Summoned and have beneficial individual effects, making them much easier to put on the field and allowing them to pump Pet Dragon's ATK to colossal levels.
  • Bigger Is Better: The Maximum Monsters, once Maximum Summoned, are universally far bigger than your average monster both inside the card art and outside of it (since Maximum Monsters are big enough to cover three whole cards), and are also extremely powerful.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • Anything with a really big number can be difficult enough to surmount to be considered a boss monster, even in the 2200+ range, since the average range of monster ATK is comparatively low relative to Master Duels and effects to dispatch monsters or boost stats are fairly uncommon.
    • "Multistrike Dragon Dragias". It's a 2500 ATK body that can send the top card of the deck to the Graveyard to attack a second time if it destroys an opponent's monster by battle. On top of having a common but relatively high statline for a monster that is comparatively trivial to bring out compared to other, more flashy boss monsters such as Maximum Monsters or Fusion Monsters, the ability to attack twice is extremely useful for breaking through an opponent's defensive line, able to beat stalemates of players setting 3 monsters and passing or otherwise trying to stall out until they get the correct cards in their hand. It is notably one of the only cards in the entire game that has been consistently resilient to Power Creep despite being released at the start of the game.
  • Brick Joke: The "Baseball" archetype, wielded by Yuka Goha in SEVENS, is an entire archetype of baseball-themed parodies of Yuma's cards from Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL based explicitly on a joke in ZEXAL about the Numbers being baseball players and Episode 81 of the series where Yuma fights in a baseball-themed duel.
  • Call-Back:
    • Due to being based on an Xyz Summoning-centric archetype from the OCG/TCG, "Baseball" archetype monsters and cards feature various effects designed to emulate Xyz and Overlay Unit effects and some of Yuma's ace cards.
      • "Uniform No. 39: Junior Baseball King, Home"'s Japanese name is a parody of "No. 39: Utopia"'s Japanese name. Its artwork also features two baseballs as "Overlay Units", it has the same stats as "Utopia", and its ability to Tribute two Level 4 FIRE monsters as an effect cost emulates the action of discarding Overlay Units. The monster effect itself also emulates Yuma's ace Spell, "Double or Nothing!".
      • "Uniform No. 99: Junior Baseball King Dragon, Home Groundra" is a parody of "No. 99: Utopic Dragon", and features "Utopic Dragon"'s DEF and Type but half its ATK. Its ability to Special Summon "Home" to the field from the Graveyard emulates "Utopic Dragon"'s ability to summon a "Number" Xyz Monster from the GY, and upon doing so its ATK doubles to match "Utopic Dragon"'s base stats.
    • "Black Luster Soljersey" is a Normal Monster in this game due to the removal of Ritual Summoning. However, it has an accompanying Spell Card in "Black Luster Jersey Ritual", which emulates Ritual Summoning by requiring the player to Tribute 2 monsters they control to Special Summon "Black Luster Soljersey", and using this card to summon "Black Luster Soljersey" gives it the same stat line as the original "Black Luster Soldier".
  • Canon Foreigner: Rush Duel introduced an exclusive Monster Type called "Galaxy" as part of lead protagonist Yudais's cards in the GO RUSH!! anime.
    • Certain Fusion monsters also have new types - "Cyborg", "Magical Knight", "High Dragon", "Celestial Warrior", and "Omega Psychic". Their notability comes at least in part from their "Multi-Choice Effects" - which, as the name indicates, lets you pick between two effects.
  • Competitive Balance: Due to being a new format with a new card pool, there are a lot of changesnote .
    • The maximum level of the monster is 10 instead of the usual 12 and all of them are Maximum Monsters (at least until Five-Headed Dragon was ported and pushed the level cap to 12 again).
    • Except for Monster Legend cards, the maximum attack and defense of a monster up to Level 4 is 1700.
    • The property of Spell Cards are either Normal, Field or Equip, while Trap cards are Normal only.
    • Among the Legend Spell Cards, there are also some differences that people choose one over the other.
      • For Legend Spell Cards that focuses on drawing cards, Pot of Greed is a +1 in card advantage; Graceful Charity is a net 0 in card advantage but helps in filling up the GY; Upstart Goblin has its own support cards on top of the life-increasing part of its effect being useful in certain decks; Pot of Avarice shuffles 5 monsters to the deck and draw 2 while having its own support card in Progress Potter.
      • For Legend Spell Cards that focuses on recovering monsters, Monster Reborn special summons one monster in either players' GY; The Warrior Returning Alive recovers 1 Warrior monster for the player's GY without any additional cost; Monster Reincarnation recovers any monster from the player's GY to the hand by discarding one card; Dark Factory of Mass Products retrieves 2 Normal monsters from the GY to the hand; Recurring Nightmares retrieves 2 Dark monsters with 0 DEF from the GY to the hand
      • For Legend Spell Cards that focus on destruction, Tribute to The Doomed can destroy any monster on the field but requires the player to discard a card from hand. Smashing Ground has no requirement but can only destroy a face-up monster the opponent controls and it must be the one with the highest DEF. Dark Hole destroys all monsters on both fields.
      • For Legend Trap Cards that focus on monster removal, Mirror Force destroys all your opponent's face up attacking monsters in the battle phase, while Torrential Tribute destroys all monsters in the field whenever a player Summons a monster. Compulsory Evacuation Device returns a monster to the hand, bypassing any destruction immunity effects it may have.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Many destructive card effects (such as Rage and Conspiracy and Gi-ant Revolution) only work on monsters up to a certain level, making high-level Monsters harder to get rid of. Maximum Monsters in Maximum Mode additionally have immunity to being destroyed by Traps from a Continuous Effect of one of their components (with some later Maximums having even more protection), on top of their high level keeping them out of reach of almost all level-gated effects.
  • The Dividual: A Maximum Monster is comprised of three separate monsters that are joined together as a single monster on the field when the player performs a Maximum Summon. When a Maximum Monster is Maximum Summoned, the three monsters combine and grant the Maximum Monster all of their effects simultaneously.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The "Bubble Era" archetype is named after the Japanese economic bubble from the early 1990's, hence the archetype primarily featuring younger versions of female cards from the original Yu-Gi-Oh! and the Spells/Traps and flavor text referencing popular trends and fads from the 90s. All the monsters in the archetype are also AQUA, because it's a "bubble".
  • Hotter and Sexier:
    • Despite being targeted towards a younger audience, female Rush Duel monsters tend to ease into the provocative and Fanservice side of artwork more heavily than standard Yu-Gi-Oh!, with busty and curvy women being a relative frequency.
    • As part of the "Bubble Era" archetype, the classic card "Dian Keto the Cure Master", originally depicted as a sagely, elderly woman, was spun off into younger counterparts "Dian Keto the Prison Master" (a young and sexy prison warden in a tight skirt) and "Dian Keto the Boogie Master" (an attractive middle-aged woman in a suit and fishnet stockings).
  • Fanservice Pack: "Gemini Elf" received an artwork update in Rush Duel that not only makes the duo more conventionally attractive but also bumps up their breast sizes up a few notches and makes their cleavage line even more noticeable.
  • Later-Installment Weirdness: Unlike modern Yu-Gi-Oh!, the concept of archetypes is completely absent, at least by strict definition. While many cards exist as a series ("Sevens Road", "Excutie", etc.), none of their cards specify card names and are technically "generic" support, but written in such a way that they are best used in their series. This allows a lot more cards to be more generically applicable in deckbuilding terms while keeping cards chained up with enough restrictions to prevent them from being too useful.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Class-Change Mirror's ability to revive a Summoned Skull seems to reference how in Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories and Yu-Gi-Oh! The Duelists of the Roses, the card "Job-Change Mirror" could fuse with almost any weak Fiend monster to form Summoned Skull.
    • To commemorate the Rush Duel update for Duel Links, Konami distributed Rush Duel Skill Cards in the style of Speed Duel Skills based on Yuga, Luke, Gavin, and Romin at a Japanese event. They work like Speed Duel Skill Cards, but since the physical Rush Duel format doesn't support the mechanic they are not legal to play.
    • One series of Spell Cards all have a shared effect of allowing you to destroy 1 Spell/Trap card on the field if the user controls a specific Monster Type. Each card in this series features artwork of an OCG/TCG-exclusive monster according to the type supported by each card.
    • In the [1] manga, "Gaia the Fierce Knight" was described as "the strongest monster of the Magical Knight Type" in its first appearance, but such a Type does not exist in the card game (it was changed to say Warrior Type in the official English translations). Here, there really is a Magical Knight Type, so one of Gaia's Fusion counterparts, "Gaia the Battle Ruler", has that Type.
  • Nerf:
    • The "LEGEND" ruling is effectively a Limited banlist baked into the game as a mechanic. These are mainly printed on strong cards like big beefy monsters (Blue Eyes White Dragon, Dark Magician) or powerful spells (Pot of Greed) and serves to keep their power in check by ensuring that you can't run more than one or run multiple boss cards, essentially restricting them into an actual "boss" card archetype.
    • Rush Duels, in an ironic twist, forcefully hard-cap game speed by having a universal "once per turn" rule on all Effect Monster effects, preventing certain cards from being much more effective than they potentially could be and disallowing most duels from spiraling out of control like in normal Yu-Gi-Oh!.
    • Unlike Polymerization in the original game, Fusion can only use face-up monsters on the field as Fusion Material. Polymerization would eventually be released to Rush Duel, but as a Legend Card to prevent it from power creeping the weaker Fusion. Other cards that enable fusion from the hand are often tied down to specific typing, a massive drawback, a separate card to enable it or a mix of all of them. Best exemplified by the return of Power Bond, exclusive to summoning Machine Type Fusion Monsters, while it still doubles the ATK of said monster, you also take damage equal to the ATK boost, and it's a Legend card so you can't run Power Bond and Polymerization.
    • Although more of a collateral result of having an inherent mechanics difference compared to the OCG/TCG, this is the reason why cards that strictly draw you more cards aren't that useful. Because of Rush Duel's "refill your hand to 5 cards every turn" rule, anything that strictly makes you go plus in hand advantage without any additional benefit is considered not worth it since all you're doing is sacrificing draw power later to get draw power now (Spell Cards and monster effects that draw cards get it easier since they allow you to potentially get more cards to use right away, which is why Pot of Greed is still a Legend card, but cards like Great Tortoise of Greed which draw cards on the opponent's turn are mostly pointless).
  • No-Sell: Maximum Monsters generally share the common property of having immunity to destruction by Trap Cards, either as a continuous effect or as part of their activated effect.
  • Power Creep: Due to the mechanic of having only 1 Legend Card allowed in a deck (1 of each card type starting in 2023), the introduction of new Legend cards and new monsters from subsequent sets makes some better or worse.
    • Monster Legend cards had to contend with Spell/Trap Legend Cards before the 2023 rule changes, but now their primary competition is non-Legend monster cards that may have similar stats and/or include effects. Level 4 Normal Monster Legends like Vorse Raider have it especially rough, because the game's focus on easy Tribute Summoning slightly de-emphasizes the significance of their higher 1900 ATKnote , making it generally more worthwhile to use a high-level Legend or a Legend with a more useful effect like Mirage Dragon. High-level Normal Monster Legends can also struggle slightly despite their higher stats compared to non-Legends with effects that can increase their own ATK, but they tend to have exclusive support cards that can make them worth using.
    • Trap Legend cards are quite few as of this writing note , but a clear example of this is Sakuretsu Armor (which destroys the attacking monster when the opponent declares an attack) being crept by Mirror Force (which destroys all Attack Position monsters when the opponent declares an attack) months later. The only thing Sakuretsu Armor provides is having its own support card Sakuretsu Force that works better if Sakuretsu Armor is in the GY.
    • A slight example also exists in the maximum ATK a Normal, non-Legend Monster is allowed to have - prior to April 2022, Level 4 Normal Monsters capped out at 1500 ATK... then they introduced Transamu Reinac, who has 1600 ATK. And in April 2024, Beta the Magnet Warrior, who has 1700 ATK, has been ported from the OCG/TCG.
  • Power Equals Rarity: A number of cards are put under a special category called Legend Cards, and each player can only have 1 Legend Card in their deck of each card type (Monsters, Spells, and Traps). Not one of each Legend Card, but 1 Legend Monster, 1 Legend Spell, and 1 Legend Trap in total. These cards are typically powerful cards with high nostalgia value.
  • Punny Name: "Change of Dessert" is the girl from "Change of Heart" as a waitress serving drinks. The Japanese name is a portmanteau of the Japanese name of Change of Heart, "Kokorogawari", and "nata de coco".
  • Revisiting the Roots: Rush Duel resets Yu-Gi-Oh! back to its earliest normal summon beatdown formats (only massively accelerated), and re-releases many early classic Yu-Gi-Oh! cards.
    • Another aspect of it comes from the treatment of monster types. In the early days of classic Yu-Gi-Oh, monster types hardly matter compared to which monster work best as a beatstick and by the time Konami figured out how to work on monster types, they have already move on to archetypes for differentiation. For Rush Duel, there is a clear focus for monster types with an initial theme note .
  • There's No Kill like Overkill: Rush Duel enjoys printing hilariously large numbers to no effect other than to look really impressive.
    • "Meika Etraynzeyes the Shadow Flower Lunatic" is a Level 8 Fusion Monster with 0 ATK/DEF. It allows the player to send the top card of their deck to the Graveyard to target two of their opponent's monsters and decrease their ATK by 730,000.
    • "All For Naught -Bubble Burst-" is a Trap Card that can be activated if an opposing monster attacks a Level 8 or higher AQUA monster on your field. Normally it causes the attacking monster to lose 600 ATK, but if your opponent also controls a Spellcaster-type monster, you can choose one of your opponent's monsters and it loses 1,000,000 ATK! For the record, the highest number ever seen on a monster in the entire franchise is "iC1000: Numeronius Numeronia", which tops out at 100,000 ATK, making a 1,000,000 ATK reduction even more ludicrous.
    • "Strong Boy Sevens Road" is a Super-Deformed counterpart to "Sevens Road Magician" announced on April Fools' Day. It's functionally similar to "Magician" except with a slightly more restrictive and weaker effect, but its effect has an additional burn damage clause where if your opponent has 700 LP or lower on activation, your opponent takes 700,000,000 effect damage.
    • "Love Million" rather appropriately causes an attacking monster to lose 1,000,000 ATK if it attacks a Fairy Type monster with 0 ATK.
  • Uniqueness Rule: Legend cards in Rush Duel have the restriction that you can only have a single Legend card of each card type — Monster, Spell and Trap — in your deck. (Formerly, it was restricted to one Legend card, period.) These cards tend to be powerful relative to other Rush Duel cards.