Updated: Apr 24
If there's another Japanese franchise that was a big part of my childhood as much as Pokémon, it's definitely Yu-Gi-Oh. When I was a kid, me and my brothers were OBSESSED with Yu-Gi-Oh! We'd watch the anime on a consistent basis whenever it was on TV, we'd play some of the video games like Duellist of the Roses and Power of Chaos: Yugi the Destiny and we'd collect as many of the cards as possible and we'd have our own epic duels together with them. I even remember collecting some of the toys they made and also watching the Pyramid of Light movie that came out back in its heyday...and barely remember anything about it. Still, that should tell you how big this franchise was for me in my childhood. XD
One of my biggest memories of the franchise is when me and my older brother first got the very original Yugi and Kaiba starter decks back when they were released. I got Kaiba and he got Yugi and then later on, I got the Pegasus deck and he got Joey. Sadly, I don't have these anymore but they were a good start to our card collection back then.
Much like Pokémon however, I did eventually fall out of Yu-Gi-Oh. After the main anime ended, I stopped watching and thus never followed the franchise from GX onwards. I even got rid of my old collection of Yu-Gi-Oh cards. However, someone I know in real life brought in a bunch of Yu-Gi-Oh cards one day and...that just reignited my original passion for the franchise. I started re-watching episodes of the anime again and started a whole new collection of Yu-Gi-Oh cards, including buying BOTH Legendary Decks boxsets!
So for this post, I'll be discussing something in relation to the Yu-Gi-Oh cards, and that is the many different monsters there is. Be they dragons, machines, fairies, insects or more, there are Yu-Gi-Oh monsters of all shapes, sizes, abilities and strength and all of us have a few monsters we'd love to have in our decks. So which monsters are my personal favourites? What are the Yu-Gi-Oh monsters that I like to play the most in a card game? Grab a duel disk because it's time to d-d-d-d-d-d-D-D-D-D-D-D-D-DUEL! These are 10 of my favourite Yu-Gi-Oh monsters...
This list is in no particular order by the way. This isn't a Top 10 list of my favourites, just a list of 10 of my favourite monster cards.
1: Ground Attacker Bugroth
While this list is in no particular order, I am still starting off with what I consider to be my overall favourite Yu-Gi-Oh monster, and it's this one.
Now Ground Attacker Bugroth may seem unremarkable, I know. It's just a vanilla monster card with only 1500ATK and 1000DEF so why is THIS of all monsters my overall favourite? To be honest...I don't really know. It's one of those cases where you have a favourite thing and you can't really say why it's your favourite. I guess one of the big appeals for me is Bugroth's design. It looks really cool as this alien war machine that looks like it fell out of a big sci-fi movie. It's just such an awesome and creative looking monster and it really does have an identity of its own as a result for very few monsters have a design like this aside from other monsters sharing the Bugroth name.
Another reason I like this monster a lot is also because with the right support, it can be a pretty effective beatstick to deal with your opponent's monsters. In my own personal deck, I once had a duel where I combined this with the Spell Card "United We Stand", a card that gives the equipped monster 800 extra attack for every other monster you control and thus I turned this vanilla monster card into a pretty powerful beatstick! Also, for obvious reasons, it works well in a Machine-themed deck with all the other support that machines get and makes for handy Tribute-fodder that can also reasonably defend itself.
So yeah, weird how THIS of all things is my favourite monster card but hey, sentimentality can be a weird thing at times. At least Bugroth is a well-oiled machine that can be a reliable weapon if you know how to use it well...
2: Blue-Eyes White Dragon
Sorry to be so obvious but come on, what Yu-Gi-Oh list DOESN'T include Blue Eyes White Dragon as either one of the best or a favourite? It's Blue-Eyes White Dragon! What more needs to be said?!
I've always loved Blue-Eyes White Dragon ever since the day I became a Yu-Gi-Oh fan. What's not to love about it? It's a 3000ATK beatstick and is the strongest Normal Yu-Gi-Oh monster you can get! Not only is your opponent almost always guaranteed to be screwed the moment this monster gets on the field, but Blue-Eyes comes with a lot of handy support cards that makes it easier to summon nowadays, making it not just a powerful beatstick, but a reliable one.
It also helps that this dragon boasts a really badass design that makes it look elegant and terrifying at the same time, a perfect visual metaphor for how Blue-Eyes brings beautiful destruction to its enemies. Also the anime gives it one of the most awesome roars ever recorded for a fictional monster. Although I must ask, why is it called "Blue-Eyes WHITE Dragon"? It's clearly blue! Yes it has a white shine to it but it's so obviously a blue coloured dragon, not white! Then again, Blue-Eyes Blue Dragon kinda sounds weird so it's good we didn't go with that. XD
Still, Blue-Eyes White Dragon is a monster card I'm always glad to have in a deck and is one of the finest examples of an awesome monster card. If I could live the life of Hiccup from HTTYD, I'd have THIS dragon as my partner any day...
3: Black Skull Dragon
Now we move on to my favourite Fusion monster, the Black Skull Dragon.
This thing just SCREAMS badass from how it looks with it being the perfect blend of Summoned Skull and Red-Eyes Black Dragon's designs. If you took Summoned Skull and made it a Dragon-type, it would easily look like this. Not only does Black Skull Dragon look awesome as this terrifying dragon creature straight out of a medieval fantasy story, but it's one of the most reliable fusion monsters you can ever whip out a Polymerization for. It's a 3200ATK beatstick and with Dragon cards having plenty of support like Equip spells or Mountain for a Field Power Bonus, it can become even stronger and truly wreck your opponents up!
I know some will say that Archfiend Black Skull Dragon is superior to this card but I'm the kind of guy who feels you can't replace the originals, especially this one with its awesome design that few others have matched. I can also say the anime played a huge part in my liking this creature as it really had some awesome showings, especially when it helped Yugi and Joey beat Para and Dox or when Yugi used it to beat Joey in Duellist Kingdom.
If there's ever any reason to have a Polymerization in your deck, this monster is definitely it. Black Skull Dragon is an example as to how two monsters can come together to make one awesome monster that will serve you well...
4: Barrel Dragon
It's a robot dinosaur thing with guns for hands and a gun for a face! HOW IS THAT NOT AWESOME?! XD
Barrel Dragon is easily among my favourite Machine monsters for its badass (and frankly terrifying) appearance as this robosaurus war machine that looks like it could level cities with just three single shots from its huge guns! I do question why it's called "Barrel Dragon" when it's so obviously a dinosaur and NOT a dragon but that's just nitpicky.
Barrel Dragon is not only awesome for its design, but what it is as a monster card. It's a 2600ATK beatstick, which is always going to be useful, and it comes with a nifty effect in how if you score at least two heads from three coin flips, you can destroy a monster card on your opponent's side of the field. That's always handy in clearing the field and if you win the coin tosses, it can be a great way to get rid of your opponent's ace monsters if Barrel Dragon is weaker than they are, while also potentially leaving them wide-open for an attack on their Life Points though the effect isn't always going to work as it's a matter of luck so don't rely on it too much.
Barrel Dragon is a must-have for any Yu-Gi-Oh deck, especially a Machine one. It's a total badass that can blow away your opponents with any of its three guns. You don't want to end up in this monster's sight when its guns aim for you...
5: Curse of Dragon
This is one of those cards that may not be the most remarkable, but I still love it regardless.
Curse of Dragon has always stuck out in my mind for being one of the most awesome looking monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh. This thing just looks like it could kill you instantly with how vicious and sharp it looks! It's like you'd spear yourself just looking at it!
As a monster card, it's a vanilla monster with only 2000ATK and 1500DEF but unlike most players nowadays, I feel that a monster's at its most useful if utilized well. Curse of Dragon only requires one Tribute summon to get it to the field so if you need a strong monster out as quickly as possible, this can help at least and as mentioned earlier, Dragons have a lot of support to make them even stronger so Curse of Dragon is a strong Dragon monster you can send out and power up quicker than some other more powerful beatsticks. Also for those that like their Fusion Monsters, Curse of Dragon can be there to give you Gaia the Dragon Champion though let's be honest, that particular fusion's not really worth the effort compared to most others.
Curse of Dragon is another case where nostalgia and sentimentality plays the most part in my liking for a monster card and I have no shame in it. This is a dragon that can still be reliable and is likely to be a curse to your enemies if they're unable to beat it...
6: Insect Queen
This is on the list mostly for being my favourite Insect Monster, as well as its intimidating debut in the anime's Battle City arc during Joey and Weevil's duel.
I often see a lot of Yu-Gi-Oh related blog posts saying that Insect Queen is useless or is a "bad card" and all that. I vehemently disagree as that is objectively false. Not only is Insect Queen a 2200ATK beatstick, but it has an effect that lets it gain 200 extra attack for every Insect Monster on the field, not just yours, and its effect even applies to itself so you end up with a 2400ATK beatstick instead of 2200 once it enters the field! There's also the fact there's a lot of Insect support nowadays that makes it easier and quicker to summon be it Parasite Paranoid, Cocoon of Ultra Evolution or even a simple Pinch Hopper effect, so it's not like you always need to tribute summon it. Granted, it sucks that you can't attack unless you tribute a monster but given it summons an Egg Token every time you destroy a monster, you basically get a free monster to sacrifice every other turn (provided the token doesn't get destroyed but hey, a DNA Surgery and Insect Barrier combo will stop that!).
So not only is Insect Queen a monster that can be a truly powerful beatstick, but it has this really awesome design where it looks like some monstrous beetle/spider-like creature that truly looks ferocious. If you're afraid of bugs than this thing is NOT something you'll want to meet in your nightmares!
While I can agree and accept that Metamorphosed Insect Queen is the superior monster, I'm just a sucker for the old designs and while some may think Insect Queen is useless, I happily disagree with them. To me, she is truly deserving of her title and is one queen you don't want to mess with...
7: The Magnet Warriors
These are some of the coolest monsters to be introduced in the Battle City arc and I would always love seeing them whenever Yugi would play them in battle.
The Magnet Warriors consist of three vanilla monsters, Beta, Alpha and Gamma respectively, and the three of them can combine together to form Valkyrion the Magna Warrior (although it's not a Fusion Monster, it's special summoned from the hand by sacrificing the three Magnet Warriors from your hand or your side of the field). All of these monsters have some of Yu-Gi-Oh's coolest and most creative designs what with the whole magnet theme going on with them and how each warrior manages to incorporate magnets into their designs in a different way from each other and Valkyrion truly looks as if he's a fusion of all three of them together to form one monster.
Individually, the Magnet Warriors can make good tribute fodder and Alpha and Gamma being useful walls to protect your life points with 1700 and 1800DEF respectively while Beta is the best one to use as a beatstick with its 1700ATK power. Valkyrion on the other hand is a 3500ATK beatstick so getting him on the field will very beneficial to you. I also find it helpful that Valkyrion can be special summoned the moment you have all three Magnet Warriors. Doesn't matter if they're in your hand or on the field, you can get him out regardless. There's other support cards that can make getting Valkyrion on the field easier so you don't always have to rely on the one presented to you.
The Magnet Warriors are an awesome bunch of monsters that are worth having in your deck and I always look forward to using them in my duels. Though I must ask why they're Rock types when they very clearly look like Machine type Monsters. Still, I love these guys and I'm sure I'm not the only one with an attraction to the Magnet Warriors...
8: Summoned Skull
Another classic Yugi monster for the list, and always a favourite of mine in his deck.
When watching the anime, I'd always enjoy it whenever Yugi would use this guy. Summoned Skull is just an awesome looking beast with its skeletal appearance, demon like wings and purple body. It's no wonder this is one of those creature designs that easily falls under "iconic" as when you see this guy, you'll immediately think of this franchise. Summoned Skull isn't all looks though. He's a realiable beatstick with 2500ATK and only six stars so he's a monster with power on par with something like Dark Magician that you can get out relatively quickly with just one Tribute summon. Handy, isn't it? Its 1200DEF doesn't give it much in the way of defending you and makes it a prime victim for Shield and Sword but eh, no Monster Card is perfect.
Summoned Skull is not only a reliable beatstick that's faster to get out on the field than most other powerful monsters, but it also comes with a lot of handy support, especially if he's in a Fiend-themed deck, an Archfiend-themed deck or if he's in a Red-Eyes deck to make Black Skull Dragon with. It's also handy if you have Makiu the Magical Mist on standby to give him a nifty power boost too.
This is a card I always feel nostalgic towards but it's also a monster card that I feel has withstood the test of time and is still a useful card to have in a deck. No wonder Yugi was fond of using this one back in the day as Summoned Skull is truly a monster worth summoning to the field...
9: Red Eyes Black Dragon
A fan favourite for many, I'm sure and I can say I too love the awesome power that is this dragon.
While Red-Eyes Black Dragon is no Blue-Eyes White Dragon, its still an awesome looking dragon with a terrific design that absolutely makes this thing look like a vicious killing machine that could lay waste to its enemies. The black body and red eyes are a terrific combo that make this thing just look evil and not a monster you'd ever want to mess with lest you be forced to suffer its fiery wrath.
Of course, my love for Red-Eyes mostly comes from watching Joey use it in the anime as it was truly one of his most reliable cards. With 2400ATK, it's a powerful beatstick to bring out for sure but it's also handy in a deck with a lot of Red-Eyes support or if you have Summoned Skull with you to bring out Black Skull Dragon with. It's easy to see why Red-Eyes often helped Joey out of a tough spot in his duels.
With an incredible design, a lot of nostalgic appeal, great support from many other cards that can boost its power or bring out stronger versions of itself and a decent attack stat, Red-Eyes Black Dragon is simply a classic and a worthwhile addition to many decks. Now imagine having both it and Blue-Eyes together to really cause trouble for your opponents...
10: The Egyptian God Cards
How could I have a list like this and NOT have these guys on it?
Th Egyptian God Cards were a huge factor in the famous Battle City saga from the Yu-Gi-Oh anime and that storyline really made us want to use these cards for ourselves! All three of them came off as truly unstoppable juggernauts that required our hero's best skills and luckiest draws in order to defeat and every time they came out in a duel, we knew that stuff was going down!
Slifer, Obelisk and Ra are all monsters that have very cool, striking and fearsome designs that make them like no monster we've ever seen before while also making it believable that they truly are gods among us with unimaginable power. As actual playable cards, Slifer and Obelisk are great to use with Obelisk's effect allowing you to destroy all monsters the opponent controls if you tribute two monsters while Slifer gains 1000ATK points for every card you have in your hand so with a drawing strategy in mind, you could potentially give Slifer enough attack power to end the duel in one hit! The Winged Dragon of Ra sadly got nerfed to hell and back with its abilities that actively contradict each other, which sucks because the anime version's ability had it gain attack strength equal to the monsters that were used to Tribute summon it. THAT made a lot more sense! At least Ra got a lot of support cards to try and help mitigate the issue but honestly, it should've had the anime's effect.
Anyway, all three of the Egyptian Gods are favourites of mine due to their awesome presence in the anime and for being striking, terrifying looking creatures that could spell doom for everyone. Out of them, the Winged Dragon was my personal favourite due to its majestic, golden, bird/dragon-like appearance and its status as Marik's personal ace but I always did love Slifer the Sky Dragon as well for its cool ability.
The Egyptian God cards are monsters that have certainly captured the imaginations of fans everywhere and they're a trio of cards neither of us will be forgetting any time soon...
Perfectly Ultimate Great Moth, Dark Magician Girl, Perfect Machine King, Flame Swordsman, Dark Blade and Five-Headed Dragon.
And that's it for my 10 Favourite Yu-Gi-Oh monsters. I hope you enjoyed the list as much as I've enjoyed my little trip down memory lane as I reconnect with an old childhood favourite. Feel free you list down your personal favourite Yu-Gi-Oh monsters in the comments below.
That's it for this post and the Media Man will see you all next time when I delve into some of my personal favourite Pokémon teams I've used in the games...