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Top 6 Goyo Monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh

Jeremy enjoys dueling in between working as a chemical analyst and campus building manager.

What Are the Goyo Cards in Yu-Gi-Oh?

Based off classic synchro monster "Goyo Guardian," the Goyo archetype consists of mostly earth-attributed warrior-type synchro monsters. Since they don't currently possess any main deck cards, they work as more of a supplement theme to pair with other structures. That said, while their membership is low, they offer powerful effects that let you steal control of your opponent's monsters, turning their own troops against them. And, unlike some synchro monsters, Goyos don't rely on using certain materials (although some need earth monsters).

But, with several new members added since the original, can any samurai usurp Guardian from his throne? Find out as we count down the six best Goyo monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh!

Best Goyo Monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh

6. Goyo Defender
5. Goyo Chaser
4. Goyo Emperor
3. Goyo King
2. Goyo Predator
1. Goyo Guardian

Goyo Defender

Goyo Defender

6. Goyo Defender

ATK: 1000
DEF: 1000

While it's nice that Goyo Defender accepts any tuner and non-tuner materials and is a different level than Guardian, he was hit hard by the link monster master rules. His effect lets him once per turn special summon another Defender from your extra deck if all monsters you control (minimum one) are earth warrior synchro monsters.

Thus, if you control any link monsters, you'll be unable to access the effect, and if your first Defender is in your extra monster zone, you won't have any available spaces for his duplicate effect. This means you either need an opposing link monster to point for you (which is reliant on chance) or to revive Defender from your graveyard, and it's just not worth a monster with such poor battle stats. He can boost his power by 1000 per other earth warrior synchro monster you control when attacked, but it's not enough to save him from his unfortunate downgrade with the new format.

Goyo Chaser

Goyo Chaser

5. Goyo Chaser

ATK: 1900
DEF: 1000

Chaser's biggest downside is his mediocre ATK, which can make it hard to utilize his effects. However, he accepts any tuner and non-tuner materials, only needs their levels to add to four, and gains 300 additional ATK per other earth warrior synchro monster, pairing well with fellow Goyo cards.

Additionally, when Chaser destroys a monster by battle and sends it to the graveyard, you can special summon that monster to your field with its ATK halved. Since this occurs during your battle phase, if you cast it in attack mode, you'll be able to immediately swing with it (although its ATK will be cut). Just remember that any Goyo monster thefts rely on your opponent's monster being sent to the graveyard after battle destruction—you can't summon them if they end up somewhere else (like being banished with "Macro Cosmos").

Goyo Emperor

Goyo Emperor

4. Goyo Emperor

ATK: 3300
DEF: 2500

Fusion monster Goyo Emperor needs two earth warrior synchro monsters as material, which can make him difficult to summon, but you can ease the process using two Defenders or "The Earth - Hex-Sealed Fusion" (whose contact fusion prevents the need of a fusion spell).

To justify your efforts, Emperor arrives with an impressive 3300 ATK, and whenever he or a monster you control that is owned by your opponent destroys an enemy in battle, you can special summon it to your field (in either position). Additionally, whenever your opponent special summons one or more monsters, you can tribute an earth synchro monster to steal control of the monsters, a powerful net that makes it hard to remove Emperor with monster effects.

However, when a face-up Emperor leaves the field, your opponent regains control of their monsters you possess, so try using them as material for a link, xyz, or tribute summon to avoid relinquishing them if Emperor falls.

Goyo King

Goyo King

3. Goyo King

ATK: 2800
DEF: 2000

King accepts any tuner, but he needs one or more synchro monsters as non-tuners, making him tricky to field. However, he arrives with a sturdy 2800 ATK that temporarily increases by 400 per earth warrior synchro monster you control (including himself) when he attacks an opposing monster.

This combos well with King's next effect, letting him either revive the monster he defeats in battle or steal control of a different face-up opposing creature. Thus, use King to vanquish weaker foes while usurping command of your opponent's aces, essentially removing two monsters in one attack and gaining a new one yourself.

Goyo Predator

Goyo Predator

2. Goyo Predator

ATK: 2400
DEF: 1200

Goyo Predator functions similarly to the original Guardian, serving as a level six synchro monster. He accepts any tuner and non-tuners, and whenever he destroys a monster in battle and sends it to the graveyard, you can special summon it in either position, although any battle damage it inflicts is halved.

This offers a superior version of Chaser's revival; both let you immediately swing with your monster and only inflict half damage, but Predator's recovered units technically retain their full ATK, making them less vulnerable on your opponent's turn.

Goyo Guardian

Goyo Guardian

1. Goyo Guardian

ATK: 2800
DEF: 2000

Compared to Predator, Guardian needs an earth tuner (although non-tuners can be any attribute) and he can only special summon creatures in defense position, preventing them from attacking the turn they arrive. This also makes him unable to revive link monsters (who can't exist in defense position).

However, he's simply much stronger than his counterpart, offering 2800 ATK, and when you eventually shift your stolen positions to attack position, they can deal full battle damage (unlike Predator's weakened revivals). In addition to whatever unique earth tuners your archetype employs, recommended tuners include"Masked Chameleon" and "Glow-Up Bulb"

If not the top-tier champion he once was, Guardian is still an impressive force who dwarfs most level six monsters in battle stats, and he's a surprisingly cheap for a powerful extra deck card, costing less than a single dollar!

Supporting the Goyo Monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh

While several Goyo cards work well together, don't feel pressured to include all of them in your limited extra deck (which can only hold 15 cards)—sometimes a single Predator or Guardian is all your theme needs. And while link monsters offer additional extra deck zones to help field multiple extra deck monsters, remember that creatures you revive from the graveyard (even extra deck ones) will only take up main monster zones, making the Goyos less reliant on link units than you might think.

A classic archetype with members that can blend into other structures, I hope to see the Goyo set expand in future releases, and they partner well with warrior strategies like X-Saber and Gouki. But for now, as we eagerly await Konami's next batch of earth synchro monsters, vote for your favorite card and I'll see you at our next Yu-Gi-Oh countdown!

© 2019 Jeremy Gill