In between "Pokémon" journeys, Jeremy enjoys working as a pharmaceutical chemist and campus manager.
Toon Decks in Yu-Gi-Oh
As one of the game's oldest archetypes, Toons were long out of the competitive scene, but they've been reinvigorated by a flux of new supports, once again becoming relevant. Popularized in the anime by Maximillion Pegasus, Toon cards are cartoony versions of classic monsters, but they're not just aesthetically different, they wield various effects, many of which allow direct attacks.
But not all Toons are created equal—which reign supreme? These are the ten best Toon monsters for your Yu-Gi-Oh deck!
10. Toon Barrel Dragon
Barrel Dragon requires two tributes to normal summon, so try special summoning him with other Toon effects. And sadly, like many Toons, he can't attack the turn he's summoned. But he has solid 2600 ATK, and the staple Toon ability, able to attack your opponent directly while they don't control any Toons and you have "Toon World" fielded.
Plus, he has an upgraded version of original Barrel Dragon's effect; once per turn, Toon Barrel can toss three coins, and if at least two are heads, you target and destroy any card on the field (original could only pick monsters). Barrel's also great for budget players (most of today's Toons cost far more than him), priced at under $2!
9. Toon Masked Sorcerer
Sorcerer can't attack the turn he's summoned, he's destroyed when Toon World is destroyed, and his ATK is a measly 900. However, he doesn't require any tributes, can attack directly while you control Toon World and your opponent has no Toons, and lets you draw a card whenever he inflicts battle damage to your opponent.
This is a rare and valuable advantage engine for the Toons, rewarding you with easy draws from direct hits as long as you can protect Sorcerer with other effects.
8. Toon Ancient Gear Golem
Like Toon Barrel Dragon, Toon Golem can't attack the round he arrives and requires two tributes to normal summon, but he can attack directly with Toon World and no opposing Toons. With 3000 ATK, that's a huge chunk of life, and just like his original form, when Golem attacks, your opponent can't activate spells/traps until the end of the damage step, blocking counters like "Mirror Force".
You can abstain from attacking directly if you like, which you might do to take advantage of Golem's next effect: when he attacks a defense position monster, he inflicts piercing battle damage.
7. Toon Cyber Dragon
Like his brethren, Cyber can't attack the turn he's summoned, but he can attack directly if you control Toon World and your opponent doesn't control any Toons. Cyber normally requires a tribute to normal summon, but you can special summon him if you control zero monsters and your opponent has at least one.
6. Toon Gemini Elf
Gemini can't attack the turn she's summoned and is destroyed if Toon World is. However, she can attack directly with Toon World if your opponent has no Toons, wields great attack for a level four monster (2100), and unlike her default form (who is a simple normal monster), Gemini has a damage-activated effect, making your opponent discard a random card when she inflicts battle damage to them!
5. Red-Eyes Toon Dragon
Like his classic counterpart, Toon Red-Eyes is rather weak for a two-tribute monster at just 2400 ATK, and he has the typical Toon attack delay. But not only can he attack directly with Toon World, he can once per turn special summon a different Toon from your hand, a great way to field higher-level cards without tributes. This effect also ignores a card's summoning conditions, meaning it can be used for "Toon Black Luster Soldier" (more on him soon).
4. Toon Harpie Lady
Harpie Lady isn't very powerful and has summoning sickness, but you can special summon her from your hand if you control Toon World, and if you control another Toon monster when you do so, you can then destroy a spell/trap on the field. This is also a good way to swarm tributes for higher-level Toons, and as usual, Harpie can attack directly if you possess Toon World and your opponent has no Toons.
3. Toon Cannon Soldier
Like his original form, Toon Cannon is banned in the Asian OCG, but not the overseas TCG—he's not even limited here. His ban stems from his powerful effect, letting you tribute a monster to inflict 500 damage to your opponent, and this isn't once-per-turn, meaning infinite-monster loops turn into infinite damage. For instance, combining any tuner, Cannon, "Quillbolt Hedgehog", and "Imperial Iron Wall" means infinite graveyard revivals of Quillbolt, thus infinite damage via Cannon.
So he's powerful in the right decks, but in standard Toon builds, he's nothing special; his stats are mediocre, he can't attack when he arrives, and he's destroyed when Toon World is (though he can attack directly with it).
2. Toon Black Luster Soldier
Original Black Luster Soldier is a ritual monster, so Toon Luster utilizes a similar casting method: you special summon him from your hand by tributing Toons from your hand/field whose total levels are at least eight ("Blue-Eyes Toon Dragon" can serve as the entire tribute).
Once out, Luster wields impressive 3000 ATK, and he's notable for not having an attack delay; he can swing the turn he arrives! Plus, like other toons, he can attack directly with Toon World, but you can forgo his turn's strike to target and banish one card on the field. Giving up 3000 damage is a big price, but sometimes you need removal more, especially since it denies graveyard filling and can target any card type.
1. Toon Dark Magician
Yet again we see the standard delayed-but-direct attacks with Toon World. However, whereas Yugi Moto's infamous "Dark Magician" is a normal monster, his Toon counterpart has an additional effect: you can once per turn discard a card to either special summon a different Toon from your deck, or add any Toon spell/trap from deck to hand.
So, as long as your hand has supplies, you can find any Toon card you need while skillfully avoiding tributes for high-level Toons.
Toon Supports in Yu-Gi-Oh
For years, Toons were largely ignored—their direct attacks are balanced by their summoning sickness and swarming difficulties, but they've gained many potent spell/trap supports that make their theme viable. For instance, "Toon Table of Contents" is an easy way to search any Toon from your deck, while "Toon Kingdom" provides an excellent field spell that counts as Toon World.
We'll examine these supports more in a future review, but for now, vote for your favorite card and I'll see you at our next Yu-Gi-Oh countdown!
© 2020 Jeremy Gill