We now make our way to the last part of my top 20 favorite Yu-Gi-Oh! archetypes. I hope everyone has enjoyed the list so far. There are just five more entries. As always – in no particular order of significance.
Ah, the Blue-Eyes White Dragon will always be one of the signature monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh! In fact, the Blue-Eyes White Dragon was my very first “boss” monster when I got one of the original starter decks.
One of my first real decks when I was semi-competitive involved the classic dragon deck that summoned multiple Blue-Eyes White Dragons. Good times.
As a result, the card (and archetype as a whole) will always have a fond place in my heart forever.
Back in the day, there was an experiment with “LV monsters,” and Horus the Black Flame Dragon cards were one of the better ones as its own archetype. It was a simple but novel idea – your monsters could level up and get stronger throughout the game.
Of course, your monsters got even better as they increased in LV, so it was an easier archetype to understand without unnecessary complexity.
Not to mention, Horus the Black Flame Dragon LV8 was quite the beast in its heyday. Capable of shutting out your opponent’s Spells, he also had his own “Horus Lockdown” that brought dread and fear to any table.
Now that’s real power.
I am a sucker for “flavorful” mechanics. When you think of snakes, you naturally think of stuff like venom. This archetype revolved around their unique Venom Counters. These Venom Counters would inflict a poison onto your opponent’s monsters (and special counters for your opponent as well)!
Playstyle-wise, the cards whittled your opponent’s monsters down with this toxic mechanic. Though the archetype was more casual than practical, I will give the archetype props for executing the concept well.
When it comes to design, sometimes an archetype has TOO many tools to succeed. In the Mermail’s case, a long run in its respective metagame and noteworthy dominance as a deck choice proved just that.
If you really think about it, technically speaking, don’t all people want deck archetypes to be respectively competent if not great? Mermails were popular because they were so good. They had the engine, the win conditions and the consistency.
And most importantly to me from a creativity standpoint, they had a coherent theme from top to bottom.
5. Masked HERO
Technically, this is more of a sub-archetype than a full-blown one. Regardless, it is more superhero stuff in card game form! I like the idea of “switching” out heroes on the fly with the appropriate one for the situation with its signature Mask Change card.
This deck even saw some high-place finishes at the competitive level! So cool!
So I hope you all have enjoyed this series. As a reminder, these entries are just my personal favorites. What is great about Yu-Gi-Oh! and any card game for that matter is how you can like whatever you want.
Love the cards. Love the game.
All card images and pictures belong to Konami. Images are from the Yu-Gi-Oh! Wiki. © 1996 Kazuki Takahashi
Also published on Medium.