Yu-Gi-Oh: Top 6 Monsters for Any Deck
We've previously explored several types of Yu-Gi-Oh monsters; today, we'll focus on monsters who fit well in pretty much any deck. If you're not yet a hardcore pro duelist but are looking for some casual fun, try playing a few of these creatures to reap their powerful and varied effects.
They may not all enjoy the numerous support of popular cards like Dark Magician, but they offer a surprising amount of benefits in the right duelist's hands. We know the drill by now, so let's get to it and rank some of the most well-rounded monster cards in Yu-Gi-Oh!
Note: This list highlights some powerful monsters of the past, but is admittedly aging (card games naturally add new and better monsters over time). I look forward to periodically reviewing fresh sets for Yu-Gi-Oh, and thankfully, many of these monsters can still help in several builds.
6. Cyber Dragon
Our first monster was made popular by the character Zane Truesdale in the show Yu-Gi-Oh GX. Cyber Dragon is a level 5—meaning that it requires one monster to be sacrificed to summon it (level 4s and below can be summoned for free). However, its monster effect allows you to "special" summon it if your opponent has a monster out and you do not.
This allows it to enter the field easily, and gives your one "normal" summon for the turn to another monster. Cyber Dragon enjoys a solid 2100 Attack and has potential to transition into stronger Xyz or Fusion cards. Give this mighty and accessible "dragon" a try!
5. Alector, Sovereign of Birds
Alector, Sovereign of Birds works similarly almost like an upgraded version of Cyber Dragon. He has stronger attack, better defense, and a slightly different summoning effect: You can special summon him when your opponent controls at least two monsters of the same attribute; a typical condition considering most decks utilize creatures of like attributes.
Plus, this birdbrain gets a bonus effect: you can target a face-up card, once per turn, and negate its effect for that turn. This rips through many defensive barriers your opponent may concoct. For his strong attack, easy summoning, and extra effect, I highly recommend him!
4. Spirit Reaper
This eerie monster works great because of a strong offensive and defensive effect, and you don't need a tribute to summon him.
You'll notice Spirit Reaper's pathetic battle stats—but consider that the card's effect allows it to be invulnerable in battle. Enemy monsters can't destroy the card by attacking it; you could keep it in defense position to craft a powerful barrier. Once you see an opening, change your monster to attack position and nail your opponent; thanks to Reaper's second effect, they must discard a card when Reaper lands a direct attack. Give him a chance to always have a defensive ace up your sleeve.
3. Neo-Spacian Grand Mole
Third place goes to a monster made famous by the main character of Yu-Gi-Oh GX, Jaden Yuki. A member of the Neo-Spacian monster archetype, Grand Mole performs even in other monster series. Its battle stats aren't great, but this guy's effect allows you to return it and any monster it battles to their respective owner's hand.
Imagine how annoying fighting this guy must be. Your opponent works hard to call out a level-8 monster (which requires two sacrifices), but then you send Grand Mole to battle it. Both monsters are returned to the hand; your opponent will now have to re-sacrifice new monsters to call forth the level 8, while you can summon your measly level-3 monster for free. Alternatively, return potent opposing fusion, synchro, xyz, or link monsters to your foe's Extra Deck.
It's as simple as that! Give it a shot and watch your rival seethe as you repeatedly foil their tribute and special summons.
Second place goes to the reliable Marshmallon. Similarly to Spirit Reaper, he can't be destroyed in battle—set it in defense position to guard your Life Points. Additionally, when Marshmallon is first flipped face-up, your opponent receives 1000 damage, a significant chunk of the 8000 points each player begins with.
Marshmallon provides a strong defense and damages your adversary—all while staying in its comfortable defense position. Certainly a powerful card, but one monster seems more adaptable to almost any deck . . .
ATK/ DEF/ Level
Gorz the Emissary of Darkness
Special summon when you take damage while you have no cards on the field.
Special summon from Graveyard when you have no magic or trap cards on the field.
Gain 1000 Life Points when destroyed by battle. Then, you can summon up to 2 more Nimble Momonga from your deck.
1. Golden Ladybug
The number one monster for just about any set of cards has just zero attack? Yep, today's first place goes to the dependable Golden Ladybug. Unlike almost any monster in the game, you're pretty much never going to want to summon this creature to the field.
She's got no attack or defense, and no effect to help her in battle. What she does have is an easy to way to gather Life Points. Once during each of your turns, you can reveal her in your hand, and gain 500 life. Duels may last dozens of turn; 500 points each turn can really add up.
Plus, since the effect activates from the hand, not the field, it's difficult for opponents to destroy this insect. If you're looking for a great support monster, consider Golden Ladybug—she's one of the best ways to consistently regenerate your health.
Which card do you prefer?
Hopefully you've learned about some adaptive monsters, and remember to obey the simple golden rule of the TCG: have fun. Still, although your monster archetype will contain several specific support cards, don't overlook the most powerful generalized options, many of which catch unsuspecting foes off guard.
As we eagerly await our next Yu-Gi-Oh TCG batch, feel free to vote for your favorite entry, and I'll see you at our next card countdown!
Questions & Answers
Are Cyber Dragons Yu-Gi-Oh cards competitive, or were they?
Cyber Dragon was awesome upon its debut, and while it's definitely not at the top of the meta, continued support through fusion and xyz monsters helps keep its theme relevant.
As of this writing, though, it could use a few modernized upgrades like the Blue-Eyes and Dark Magician supports introduced alongside the Dark Side of Dimensions film.
Basically, Cyber Dragon was great upon release. Nowadays, not so much, but far from unsalvageable with some tweaks.Helpful 4
Where can I buy Yu-Gi-Oh cards?
I'd recommend Amazon or card-specific websites like TCGplayer.com; my experiences with online card shopping have been positive. If you head there from one of my articles, I'll also get a slight commission!Helpful 1
© 2015 Jeremy Gill