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How to Beat "Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon" in Yu-Gi-Oh

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

Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon

Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon

Playing Dark Dragoon in Yu-Gi-Oh

Red-Eyes Dark Dragoon is easily one of the game's most busted monsters of all time. He arrives with a fierce 3000 ATK, can once per turn negate/destroy an effect by discarding a card, and gains 1000 ATK when he does so—permanently! As if that weren't bad enough, he can't be targeted or destroyed by card effects, making him immune to most removals.

Formidable though Dragoon is, there are counters you can (and should) run, in your sideboard if nothing else—here are ten cards to beat Dark Dragoon in Yu-Gi-Oh!

Predaplant Verte Anaconda

Predaplant Verte Anaconda

Effect Veiler

Effect Veiler

10. Effect Veiler

Type: Monster

Players sometimes summon Dragoon with Red-Eyes Fusion, which pulls materials from deck (Dark Magician plus Red-Eyes Black Dragon or a dragon effect monster). More often, they use RE Fusion's effect with link monster Predaplant Verte Anaconda, which avoids the downside of no other special summons that turn.

Potent as Verte is, he's vulnerable to removal. Try the monster-negating hand trap Effect Veiler; not only does this stop Dragoon's summon, your opponent still has to pay 2000 life points as an activation cost. They also have to send the RE Fusion from deck to grave, meaning even if Verte survives a turn (unlikely with 500 ATK), your opponent might not have another spell in deck for it to copy.

Trishula, Zero Dragon of the Ice Barrier

Trishula, Zero Dragon of the Ice Barrier

9. Trishula, Zero Dragon of the Ice Barrier

Type: Monster

The tough thing about countering Dragoon with Trishula is simply amassing the components for its summon; you need a tuner and two (or more) non-tuners whose levels total 11.

But with them out, you can synchro Trishula and use its effect, which banishes (without targeting) up to three cards on the field. Dragoon's controller has to negate this or lose Dragoon, but if they do, Trishula's destruction effect will activate, which halves all opposing monsters' ATK, negates their effects, and summons Trishula's other form (Trishula, Dragon of the Ice Barrier) from your extra deck, negating its effect but making its ATK 3300.

In other words, if you can manage to prep a Trishula summon, Dragoon's going down, one way or another.

Neo-Spacian Grand Mole

Neo-Spacian Grand Mole

8. Neo-Spacian Grand Mole

Type: Monster

An old classic, Grand Mole is weak at 900 ATK but can be easily normal summoned, and when it battles another monster, its effect can bounce both back to hand. Since this neither targets nor destroys, it circumvents Dragoon's immunities.

Well, the only issue is that Dragoon can negate and destroy the effect by discarding a card. Still, Dragoon can only do so once per turn, so hopefully you can bait it with something else to give Grand Mole an easy bounce.

Gravity Controller

Gravity Controller

7. Gravity Controller

Type: Monster

Controller only works if your opponent summons Dragoon to their extra zone; similar to Grand Mole, Controller can bounce itself and an extra-deck monster back to hand when they battle. Also, it can't be destroyed in battle by extra deck cards.

This is situational, admittedly, but it's a nice surprise to keep in your extra deck if your opponent misplays. Plus, summoning Controller isn't especially difficult since he only needs one material, a non-link monster in the extra deck. Any fusion, synchro, or xyz will do, but often the best fodder is a revived pendulum monster.

Eater of Millions

Eater of Millions

6. Eater of Millions

Type: Monster

Summoning Eater of Millions requires you to banish five or more cards from your hand, field, or (most likely) extra deck, and it gains 100 ATK per face-down banished card (even opposing ones). More than that, once per turn when Eater battles a monster, it banishes it face-down. This is an excellent way to eliminate Dragoon, at least if you can bait its negation earlier in the turn.

This also has the advantage of preserving your turn's normal summon, and in very rare cases, you might be able to get Eater's ATK high enough to simply overcome Dragoon in battle (especially if you toss most of your extra deck in its summon and players have used Pot of Desires). Great for any deck and especially useful when playing second, Eater is also one of today's cheapest cards, costing less than one dollar!

Forbidden Droplet

Forbidden Droplet

5. Forbidden Droplet

Type: Spell

This quick-play sends any number of other cards from your hand/field to your graveyard to halve that many opposing monster's ATK and negate their effects for the turn. Plus, your opponent can't respond with cards of the same type that you discard, meaning tossing a single monster prevents Dragoon from negating Droplet.

Now, the key thing is that the ATK loss and negation is only for the turn, so you then have to either beat Dragoon in battle or use another effect to get rid of it, but with its targeting/destruction defense down and its ATK weakened, this shouldn't be hard.

Nibiru, the Primal Being

Nibiru, the Primal Being

4. Nibiru, the Primal Being

Type: Monster

Nibiru's an amazing hand trap against any combo deck. On a turn where your opponent has summoned at least five monsters, you can tribute all opposing monsters to summon Nibiru to your field and a token with ATK/DEF equal to the sum of the tributes to your opponent's field.

So, if your opponent uses Verte to cast Dragoon while summoning at least four other monsters that round, ruin their day with Nibiru. The only downside is if they actually use Red-Eyes Fusion, which prevents them from special summoning other monsters that round, meaning Nibiru won't work (at least until their next turn, if they summon enough).

The Winged Dragon of Ra - Sphere Mode

The Winged Dragon of Ra - Sphere Mode

3. The Winged Dragon of Ra - Sphere Mode

Type: Monster

Like Nibiru, Ra doesn't work well if your opponent plays Dragoon with Fusion instead of Verte. All you need for Ra is three monsters on your opponent's field; you can tribute them to normal summon Ra to their field, but control of it will switch back to you at the end of the next turn (though it will probably be used as link material before then).

What's important here is that tributing opposing monsters isn't an effect, so Dragoon can't stop it. Once Ra is out, he can't be targeted for effects or attacked, so you probably won't be able to deal much battle damage that turn, but that's more than a welcome price for eliminating Dragoon (and two other monsters).

Super Polymerization

Super Polymerization

2. Super Polymerization

Type: Spell

Another classic, this quick-play discards a card to fusion summon using materials from either player's field! Best of all, it can't be responded to, so you don't have to worry about getting negated.

Thankfully, Dark Dragoon is, well, dark, giving it the perfect attribute for you to fuse Starving Venom Fusion Dragon.

Radian, the Multidimensional Kaiju

Radian, the Multidimensional Kaiju

1. Radian, the Multidimensional Kaiju

Type: Monster

The infamous Kaiju archetype remains arguably the best way to eliminate problematic boss monsters. Almost every Kaiju, like Radian here, summons itself to your opponent's field by tributing a monster they control. This can't be negated, so it easily topples Dragoon, preserves your normal summon, and doesn't require any other monsters on your opponent's field.

Any of the Kaiju will do, so feel free to use whichever best fits your deck; I'm fond of Radian because his dark attribute works well with Super Poly and Allure of Darkness.

Other Cards to Eliminate Dragoon

In addition to today's list, some traps can handle Dragoon (and other threats), like Storming Mirror Force, which bounces opposing monsters, or Drowning Mirror Force, which shuffles them into deck, though of course these can be negated if Dragoon hasn't already done so that turn.

We'll see if either Dragoon or Verte gets hit in future ban list updates (Dragoon's already forbidden in the overseas OCG), but for now, vote for your favorite anti-Dragoon card and I'll see you at our next Yu-Gi-Oh countdown!

© 2021 Jeremy Gill

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