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Yu-Gi-Oh's Top 6 Forbidden Monster Cards

Updated on January 7, 2017
Yikes, kill it with fire!
Yikes, kill it with fire!

Duel Monsters

As most players know, each creature in Duel Monsters has an attack score, a defense score, a level or rank, a type (dragon, fiend, fairy, etc), and an attribute (water, fire, dark, etc).

Most have an effect, too; these effects are what make some monsters so powerful, even if their attack and defense are low. In fact, some become too strong, earning them a permanent residency in the banned list.

Which are the best? Read on to discover the six fiercest forbidden monsters of Yu-Gi-Oh!

Sinister Serpent. Effect monster cards are backgrounded orange; the age and picture of this card make it appear more pink.
Sinister Serpent. Effect monster cards are backgrounded orange; the age and picture of this card make it appear more pink.

6. Sinister Serpent

Attack: 300, Defense: 250

A level one monster with weak stats, Sinister Serpent's uses come not from its power, but from its ability. At the beginning of your turns, you can retreive it from your Graveyard for free. This guarantees you have a monster you can summon into defense mode, or serve as fodder for cards that require you to discard.

For example, Lightning Vortex destroys all face-up monsters your opponent controls, but you must discard one card. You could continuously discard Sinister Serpent, to fuel these mighty effects.

Serpent's a very reliable way to maintain a card advantage, but it's low on the list because the game designers eventually added a weakness to it, where you need to wait a turn after retrieving it, or else it will be banished, and you'll be unable to access it again. Still, definitely a powerful card.

Tribe-Infecting Virus
Tribe-Infecting Virus

5. Tribe-Infecting Virus

Attack: 1600, Defense: 1000

Next, we have the classic Tribe-Infecting Virus. Again, we're here for the effect: You can discard one card (combo it with Sinister Serpent or other Graveyard-activated cards), then declare a monster type and destroy all creatures of that type.

This can destroy your monsters too, but as long as your creatures are different types than your opponents, you're safe. Since there are 23 varieties, chances are you'll be safe. Give it a shot and watch as your opponents minions fall in one fell swoop.

Dark Magician of Chaos
Dark Magician of Chaos

4. Dark Magician of Chaos

Attack: 2800, Defense: 2600

Fourth place goes the level-8 Dark Magician of Chaos. You'll have to tribute two monsters to summon this card, but it proves to be a great help. First, when summoned, you get to retrieve a Spell from your Graveyard.

Additionally, Dark Magician of Chaos banishes monsters it destroys in battle, preventing your opponent from activating Graveyard effect. To top everything off, this card has strong attack and defense scores.

Fun to play against friends, but I'm relieved we don't have to worry about it official matches.

Cyber Stein
Cyber Stein

3. Cyber-Stein

Attack: 700, Defense: 500

Here's another old and overpowered card. This monster has low attack and defense, but its ability lets you pay 5000 Life Points (each player begins with 8000) to summon a Fusion Monster. These tend to be strong, and have great effects, but can be difficult to summon. Of course, Cyber-Stein gets you right around that problem

And yes, losing 5000 Life Points can really hurt, but in some instances, this can be used strategically. For example, some cards, like the tie-forcing Trap Self-Destruct Button, rely on you having much lower Life than your opponent.

Cyber-Stein can lower your Life Points, instantly call forth a powerful beast, and if things go poorly, you can utilize your critical condition to activate fearsome cards.

Chaos Emperor Dragon- Envoy of the End
Chaos Emperor Dragon- Envoy of the End

2. Chaos Emperor Dragon- Envoy of the End

Attack: 3000, Defense: 2500

After checking out its effects, I can forgive this guy's lengthy title. To summon him you banish a light and dark-attributed monster from your Graveyard. Gathering monsters in the Graveyard isn't usually difficult; making it surprisingly easy to summon Chaos Emperor Dragon, who boasts of incredible battle stats.

Additionally, you may pay 1000 Life Points; doing so will send all cards on the field (including Chaos Emperor Dragon) and in each player's hand to the Graveyard, and inflict 300 Life Points of damage to your opponent for each card.

This almost always does more damage to your rival than yourself (damage can easily exceed 3000), and serves as a great last resort. If you begin to lose, use this effect to damage your adversary, empty your hands, and hope that your drawn cards can turn the tide faster than theirs.

Honorable Mentions

Attack/ Defense
Cyber Jar
900/ 900
Destroys monsters on the field, then each player draws 5 cards
Neo-Spacian Grand Mole
900/ 300
Whenever it attacks or is attacked, it can return the battlers to the owners' respective hands
Destiny Hero - Disk Commander
300/ 300
Draw two cards whenever this card is summoned from the Graveyard by another card's effect
Weak monsters, but powerful effects
Morphing Jar
Morphing Jar
Fiber Jar
Fiber Jar

1. Morphing Jar/ Fiber Jar

Morphing Jar- Attack: 700, Defense: 600
Fiber Jar- Attack: 500, Defense: 500

These two cards both have incredibly powerful (and similar) effects, as we're about to see. Morphing Jar's flip effect makes both players discard their hand, then draw five cards. Similarly, Fiber Jar's flip effect makes both players return every card in their hand, field, and Graveyard into the deck, then draw five cards.

Each of these can really turn the tide of the duel. With Morphing Jar, set all your Traps and Spells, then flip Morphing Jar to make both players draw five cards. Each duelist will then have five in the hand, but you'll have the bonus of your set cards. With Fiber Jar, keep it in your hand, then if your opponent begins to overwhelm you, play it to essentially reset the duel.

Both of these jars offer the awesome ability of replenishing your hand when it's low. A third jar, Cyber Jar, exists, and its effect (while great) doesn't quite compare to these two amazing cards.

Funny how jars and pots (remember Pot of Greed?) are the true champions of Yu-Gi-Oh. If any jug or flask cards ever come out, stay on your toes.

Your Vote

Which forbidden card is the overall best?

See results

Your Vote

I hope you enjoyed examining these awesome forbidden monsters. Feel free to vote for your favorite, and I'll see you at out next countdown!

Update: Inevitably, time passes and lists change. Most of these cards are still banned and incredibly dangerous, but we've got some new kids on the block to explore; look forward to upcoming forbidden monster reviews!


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    • CorneliaMladenova profile image

      Korneliya Yonkova 2 years ago from Cork, Ireland

      I myself like the Dark Magician of Chaos :) Thank you for this hub. Really interesting and catchy :)

    • Jeremy Gill profile image

      Jeremy Gill 2 years ago from Louisiana

      Agreed, Cornelia, he's certainly a powerful and awesome- looking card. Thanks for your support!

    • profile image

      ismael 19 months ago

      is man eater bug banned?

    • Jeremy Gill profile image

      Jeremy Gill 19 months ago from Louisiana

      Man-Eater Bug used to be forbidden, but is now legal. Feel free to run some in your deck.

    • profile image

      Dyugiohd 8 months ago

      Uhm, i personallly really like black luster soldier envoy of the beginning. Just an opinion

    • profile image

      Ivan 7 months ago

      I'm very proud to have "Chaos emperor dragon envoy of the end".. i got it from my friend after winning the game, "Black luster soldier envoy of the beginning" is also a great card that can't be underestimated, it can attack twice in battle phase as long as the first attack succeed, it also has the ability to destroy one monster on the field (you can use it to destroy opponent's strongest monster on field) with the consequence is that it can't attack on that turn

    • profile image

      Looi 6 months ago

      I have dark magician of chaos!

    • profile image

      7531yo 5 months ago

      Dark magician of chaos isn't banned anymore, he's limited to 2

    • Jeremy Gill profile image

      Jeremy Gill 5 months ago from Louisiana

      7531yo is right; Yu-Gi-Oh banned lists are constantly evolving, and this is an older article. Still, it showcases some formidable creatures.

    • profile image

      Ultimagamer 3 months ago

      are any of the numeronius cards banned? Im talking about cards like c1000 and the deck that goes with it

    • profile image

      Samuel 3 months ago

      Levia Dragon Deadalus have a better effect than Chaos Emperor because Levia stays in field after effect.

    • profile image

      Austin Langan 3 months ago

      Jeremy I got a quick question for you. What about the gods and their hidden abilities? I know most of them but are the banned?

    • Jeremy Gill profile image

      Jeremy Gill 3 months ago from Louisiana


      Good news, there are legal versions of the God cards you can play in tournaments; however, they're not widely seen because of their difficulty to use. Still, in the right deck, they can be a viable option.

    • profile image

      hi 2 months ago

      is the black luster soldier forbiden

    • profile image

      Caleb 2 months ago

      I'm surprised that blaster dragon ruler of infernos is not up there

    • profile image

      Adam 8 weeks ago

      I have dark magician of chaos

    • profile image

      Jimmy 4 days ago

      yata garausa?

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