Master Duel - Expanded Rule Book
Welcome to Yu-Gi-Oh!
In this game, two players Duel each other using a variety of Monster, Spell, and Trap Cards to defeat their opponent's monsters and be the first to drop the other’s LP (Life Points) to 0.
This article will go over each of the Summoning mechanics and nuances in depth to help you understand every mechanic in Yu-Gi-Oh! to either learn how to perform them for the first time, freshen up, or even just enhance your knowledge in general.
Please know this rule book is meant specifically for Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel and some rules may vary compared to the TCG many will be familiar with.
It’s important to learn how to play correctly, so you should read this rulebook before playing if you’re new to the game (or if you're a current player who wants just to refresh themselves on some rules). Understanding the rules will help you make the best use of your cards, so keep the rulebook handy during your first few games. You can also visit The official Yu-Gi-Oh! Website for more information.
This rulebook will be separated into chapters that you can read consecutively or selectively so you can learn the information you want specifically. If you are new, it is recommended to read everything so that you can have a full grasp of how this game is played.
NOTE: All information provided here has been gathered across multiple sources and compiled here for ease of access. Sources will be identified at the bottom of the page.
Table of Contents
- Getting Started
- The Field
- Game Cards
- Spells & Traps
- Playing the Game
- Reading & Resolving Effects
- Battle Phase
- Damage Step
- ATK/DEF Modification
- Additional Normal
- "Highlander Clause"
- Game Terms
Your Deck will be made up of 40-60 cards and will typically be a mixture of Monster, Spell, and Trap Cards.
You may only use up to three copies of the same card in your Decks as well as adhering to the Forbidden/Limited List which can primarily be found here. Please know that not all the Forbidden/Limited cards will be listed here as ban list updates are made, but the majority can be found online as well as in the game itself.
The copy count limit also applies to cards that are treated as having the same name, for example:
These four cards are all treated as having the same name no matter where they are, so you may only have a combination of three across all of these copies.
The Extra deck may contain 0-15 cards and contains Fusion, Xyz, Synchro, and Link monsters in any combination.
The cards in your Extra Deck do not count towards your minimum size for your Main Deck.
Generally, you may access the monsters in your Extra Deck at any point during your Main Phase and may Summon using the appropriate Summoning method, assuming you can do so; however, you may view the contents of your Extra Deck at any time during the Duel.
This section is only for relevant Tournament Play
Your Side Deck is similar to your Main Deck where you may use 0-15 cards that can be swapped with cards in your Main Deck in between games in a Match.
When swapping cards, your Main Deck and Side Deck must be composed of the same number of cards you started with in both decks. If you started with 40 cards in your Main Deck, after swapping you may only have 40 cards still in your Main Deck.
The copy limit for cards is shared across both the Main and Side Decks, so if you have 2 copies of one card in your Main Deck, you may only have 1 more copy in your Side Deck.
The Game Field
- Main Monster Zone - MMZ
It's in this zone where you'll place your monsters when they're Summoned. You can have up to five cards here. Your monsters can be in one of three positions: face-up Attack, face-up Defense, and face-down Defense. Cards placed upright are in Attack Position and cards placed sideways are in Defense Position.
- Spell & Trap Zone - S/T Zone
In this zone is where you can place Spell and Trap cards. Similar to the MMZ, you can have up to five cards here. You may place cards here face-up to activate them, or face-down to activate them at a later point. Details on the types of Spells & Traps will be outlined in the appropriate section. Pendulum Monster Cards may be placed in the left and rightmost zones as Spells and turns the respective zone into a Pendulum Zone for as long as the Pendulum Monster remains in that zone.
- Graveyard - GY
When monsters are destroyed, and when Spells & Traps have been used, they are sent face-up to the GY. All cards in the GY are Public Knowledge and your opponent may look through it at any time unless a card effect, such as Loading... , says otherwise. The order of cards in the Graveyard should not be changed - but in Master Duel, if a card in the GY is targeted, it will be placed on top of all other cards in the GY (if any).
- Banished Area
When cards are banished, they're sent here instead of the GY. All banished cards (except face-down) are Public Knowledge and may be viewed by your opponent at any time. Only you may view your own face-down banished cards.
- Deck Zone
Your Main Deck is placed here face-down. Throughout the Duel, you will draw cards from the top of your deck, but be careful - if you run out of cards to draw, you will automatically lose the Duel! This is known as a Deck Out. If you activate any card or effect that requires you to reveal a card, look through your Deck (even if you did not), or add/remove cards from it, you must shuffle your Deck afterward unless a card effect says otherwise.
- Field Zone
Your Field Zone is for placing certain Spell cards called "Field Spells" face-up or face-down. Each player may only control one Field Spell. When activating a Field Spell from your hand, you must send any cards currently in your Field Zone to the GY. Cards in the Field Zone do not count towards the five-card limit in the S/T Zone.
- Extra Deck Zone - ED
Your Extra Deck is placed here face-down. During a Duel, you may look through your ED at any time. During the game, ED monsters may be Summoned from here to the EMZ or MMZ using their appropriate Summoning methods. Pendulum Monsters that would be sent from the field to the GY are sent here face-up instead.
- Extra Monster Zone - EMZ
The EMZ is where you may Summon monsters from your ED to the field. If Summoning a Link or Pendulum Monster, it must be placed into the EMZ or a MMZ that a Link monster points to. All other ED monsters may be Summoned straight to the MMZ. Each player may only occupy 1 EMZ at a time unless a specific condition is met known as an "Extra Link" (more on this in the Link section.) Any monsters placed in the EMZ do not count towards the five-card limit in the MMZ.
Reading Game Cards
- Card Name
The card's name is displayed here. If a card's name is referenced in an effect's text, it will be referred to in quotation marks ("name") such as Loading... and Loading... . If a card's name matches another, it is considered the same card and is applied towards the three copies per deck limit.
The number of stars displayed here represents the Level of the monster. Typically, the higher the Level, the stronger the monster is. For Xyz Monsters, these stars are displayed from the left side and are instead called "Ranks".
The symbol here represents the monster's Attribute. Generally, the Attribute is not very important in many cases, but some card effects may restrict you to a specific Attribute or may only allow you to use certain Attributes to resolve the effect.
Similar to an Attribute, a Type is an element given to a monster. Some effects require certain Types to resolve. If a monster has any abilities, it will also be displayed here next to the typing (Ex. Effect). A full list of Types can be found here.
- Card Number
This number is only relevant for physical cards but is used for identification and sorting purposes.
- Attack - ATK & Defense - DEF Points
These numbers represent both the monster's ATK and DEF points. These numbers are used when battling or while resolving some effects. In general, the higher the numbers, the better!
- Card Description
All card effects are written in this box, how to use them, and when you can use them. Effects for (most) cards are written in a language known as Problem-Solving Card Text, or PSCT. Wording on effects is very deliberate and will not have double meanings to them - essentially, cards do what they say they do. Effects will be elaborated on in the Reading Effects chapter. Generally, monster effects cannot be used while the monster is face-down on the field. Normal Monsters do not have effects but flavour text instead that do not impact the game.
Spell & Trap Cards
- Card Name
Not to be confused with Monster Types, the Type shown - along with the card's colour - will distinguish between a Spell or Trap Card. Spell Cards will have the Spell Symbol and Traps will have the Spell Symbol.
The symbol shown next to [Spell/Trap Card] will identify what special type (if any) the Spell or Trap is. These icons will be elaborated on in the Spells/Traps chapter.
- Card Description
Likewise, with Effect Monsters, Spells & Traps all have effects as well. Make sure to read the card description carefully to know how to use the card!
- Card Number
Again, is for sorting and collection purposes.
All about Monsters!
These are basic Monster Cards without effects. Many Normal Monsters have higher Attack Points and Defense Points than Effect Monsters, instead of having effects as a trade-off.
Effect Monsters are monsters with effects. Monster effects can be split into four categories:
- Trigger (includes FLIP).
Normal and Effect Monsters can be Summoned in your MMZ in four different ways:
- Normal Summon/Set
Each Player gets 1 Normal Summon/Set per turn. This is performed by placing a monster that is Level 4 or lower onto the field in face-up ATK Position (Normal Summon) or face-down DEF Position (Normal Set).
A monster that is Set is not considered Summoned until flipped via a Flip Summon the following turn or flipped face-up by a card effect (also a Flip Summon).
Monsters CANNOT be Normal Summoned in face-up DEF Position.
- Tribute Summon/Set
Similar to Normal Summoning, a player may perform a Tribute Summon/Set by sending the appropriate amount of monsters from their side of the field to the GY to Summon a higher Level of monster.
Monsters Level 5 & 6 require one Tribute while monsters Level 7+ require two Tributes before the monster can be Tribute Summoned/Set.
Likewise, with Normal Sets, a Tribute Set monster is not considered Summoned.
Additionally, some monsters may be Tribute Summoned in a special way, so you can either Tribute Summon them normally OR by using their special method.
Note that a Tribute Summon/Set will use up your Normal Summon for the turn, so plan carefully!
- Flip Summon
You can change a face-down Defense Position monster into face-up Attack Position, without using a card effect. This is called a Flip Summon. When you Flip Summon, you cannot change the monster to face-up Defense Position, only to face-up Attack Position. A Monster Card cannot be Flip Summoned in the same turn that it was Set onto the field. You cannot use most monsters’ effects until they are face-up.
- Special Summon
Some monsters can be played onto the field without being Normal Summoned or Set either by their own effect or by another card's effect. Unless otherwise specified, a Special Summoned monster is played onto the field in your choice of face-up Attack or Defense Position.
A continuous effect is active while the Effect Monster Card is face-up on the field. The effect starts when the face-up monster is successfully Summoned on the field and ends immediately once that monster is no longer on the field or is no longer face-up; there is no trigger for its activation. These monsters are most useful if you have a strategy to protect them while they are on the field.
You use this type of effect just by declaring its activation during your Main Phase. There are some Ignition Effects that have a cost to activate, like discarding cards from your hand, Tributing a monster, or paying LP. Because you can choose when to activate this type of effect, it’s easy to create combos with them.
These are special monster effects that you can activate even during your opponent’s turn. These types of effects have a Spell Speed of 2, even though all other monster effects have a Spell Speed of 1. (Spell Speed will be elaborated on in the "Spell Speed" chapter.) Since it’s difficult for your opponent to predict these cards, they can give them an unexpected surprise.
However, keep in mind that in Master Duel, Priority Switches will occur when your opponent or you have a Quick-Effect to activate - potentially giving away you have something to interrupt them with!
These effects are activated at specific times, such as “during the Standby Phase” or “when this monster is destroyed”. These cards can make for some great combos, but it’s easier for your opponent to predict what will happen.
Flip effects are a sub-type of Trigger effects. This is an effect that is activated when a face-down card is flipped face-up. This can happen when it is Flip Summoned, attacked while face-down, or flipped face-up by a card effect. These effects start with the word “FLIP:” on the card. When you have a face-down monster, your opponent must be wary because they don’t know if it has a Flip effect or not.
Ritual Monsters are special monsters that are Special Summoned with a specific Ritual Spell Card, along with a required Tribute. Ritual Monster Cards are placed in the Main Deck and cannot be Summoned unless you have all the proper cards together in your hand or on the field. Ritual Monsters generally have high ATK and DEF and some have special effects.
Black Luster Ritual tributes Blue-Eyes White Dragon to Summon Black Luster Soldier from hand.
Important information to note:
You cannot intentionally overpay the Levels required if one of the Ritual Materials you'd wish to use meets the Level requirement on its own OR if a combination of monsters already meets or exceeds the Level requirement.
So if you have a Level 8, Level 7, and Level 1 monster in your hand and you wish to Summon Loading... , you may use the Level 1 + 7 OR the Level 8, but not any other combination of the three as with 6 + 1, 6 already meets the requirement and can be the only material and 5 + 6, 6 would already meet the requirement on its own so a different material must be selected.
When you have a Ritual Spell Card, along with the matching Ritual Monster Card, in your hand, along with the required Tribute (as listed on the Ritual Spell Card), you can activate the Ritual Spell Card, placing it in the Spell & Trap Zone.
If the activation of the Ritual Spell Card is successful, Tribute monsters by sending them from your hand or the field to the Graveyard. The Ritual Spell Card will list the required amount to Tribute. After sending the Tributed monsters to the Graveyard, play the Ritual Monster Card in your Main Monster Zone in either face-up Attack or Defense Position.
Finally, place the Ritual Spell Card in the Graveyard.
Fusion Monsters are placed in your Extra Deck. They are Summoned by using the specific monsters listed on the card (called Fusion Materials) combined with a Summoning card like Loading... . In Loading... 's case, the materials needed are "Loading... " + "Loading... ".
They usually have special abilities and very high Attack Points as well. Since Fusion Summons require specific cards, be sure and include those necessary cards in your Main Deck!
Activate Polymerization: Elemental HERO Avian + Elemental HERO Burstinatrix = Elemental HERO Flame Wingman
If you have all the Fusion Materials listed on the Fusion Monster Card, in the places specified on your Summoning card, you can activate your Summoning card by placing it in your Spell & Trap Zone.
Send the Fusion Materials to the Graveyard, then take the appropriate Fusion Monster from your Extra Deck and play it in the EMZ or MMZ in either face-up Attack or Defense Position.
Finally, place your Summoning card in the Graveyard. (If another card effect causes your Fusion Materials to be sent to a place other than the Graveyard - such as Loading... - when your Summoning card resolves, send them to that other place, but the Fusion Summon still happens anyway.)
"Contact Fusion" Monsters
These special Fusion Monsters do not require Spell Cards to Summon them but instead are Summoned via a special method unofficially known as "contact fusing". By following the instructions for the monster's Summoning procedure, you can bring these monsters out very easily! Watch out, depending on the materials needed, your opponent could use your monsters as Fusion Material!
Synchro Monsters are placed in the Extra Deck. You can Special Summon a powerful Synchro Monster to the field in an instant just by using the Levels of your monsters. They can be Synchro Summoned from the Extra Deck by sending 1 face-up “Tuner” monster and any number of face-up non-Tuner monsters from your field to the Graveyard, when the sum of all their Levels is exactly equal to the Level of the Synchro Monster.
In order to Synchro Summon a Synchro Monster, you typically need 1 Tuner (look for “Tuner” next to its Type). The Tuner monster and other face-up monsters you use for the Synchro Summon are called Synchro Materials. The sum of their Levels is the Level of Synchro Monster you can Summon.
Tuner 3 + Non-Tuner 5 = Synchro 8
During your Main Phase, you can declare a Synchro Summon when the combined total Levels of 1 face-up Tuner monster and any number of other face-up monsters you control are equal to the Level of the Synchro Monster you want to Synchro Summon.
After double-checking the Level of the Synchro Monster you want, send the face-up Synchro Materials from your field to the Graveyard.
After sending the Synchro Materials from the field to the Graveyard, take the Synchro Monster from your Extra Deck and play it in the EMZ or MMZ in face-up Attack or Defense Position.
Xyz Monsters (pronounced “ikseez”) are a powerful kind of monster! You can Summon an Xyz Monster whenever you control monsters that are the same Level. Xyz Monsters start in your Extra Deck, not in your Main Deck, and wait for you to call them into action.
Remember that Xyz Monsters have Ranks denoted by the Black Stars on the left-hand side under their name and not Levels, so any card effects that involve a monster's Level such as Loading... do not affect Xyz Monsters.
When Summoning an Xyz Monster, their materials are not sent to the GY but instead stacked on top of each other underneath the Xyz Monster on the field. The materials used for the Summon are now called "Xyz Materials".
Many Xyz monsters will have a unique cost for their effects called "detaching". When detaching, simply take one of the stacked Xyz Material cards beneath your Xyz Monster and put it in the Graveyard. Keep in mind, detaching an Xyz Material is not considered leaving the field so effects like Loading... will not trigger when detached! On the flip side, if a monster used as Xyz Material was Special Summoned by an effect that would cause the monster to be banished when it leaves the field such as Loading... , it is not considered leaving the field and will not be banished.
Choose an Xyz Monster from your Extra Deck that you have the right Xyz Materials for. The Xyz Materials should be face-up on your field.
During your Main Phase, declare that you are Xyz Summoning and stack the Xyz Materials on top of each other.
Take the Xyz Monster from your Extra Deck and put it on top of the stacked Xyz Materials in the EMZ or MMZ in face-up Attack or Defense Position.
Pendulum Monster Cards are a unique kind of card that blurs the line between Monsters and Spells! They can be Summoned as monsters to attack or defend, or you can activate them as Spell Cards in your Pendulum Zones to activate extra special abilities and allow you to Pendulum Summon!
One of the defining features of Pendulum Monsters is the fact they have both a monster effect and a Spell effect (if any) when placed in the Pendulum Zone. As a result, Pendulum Monsters have two Card Descriptions. The upper is active while in the Pendulum Zone while the lower is while in the MMZ or EMZ.
Pendulum Monsters also have another ability known as a Pendulum Scale. These scale values are applied depending on which colour the Pendulum Zone is. As of today, all Pendulum Scales are the same regardless of which zone a particular Pendulum Monster is placed in. Loading... for example is always a Scale 4.
Whenever one of your Pendulum Monster Cards on the field (regardless of which Zone it is in, or even if it is a monster or not) would be sent to the Graveyard, place it face-up on your Extra Deck instead. You can Pendulum Summon it back to the field later! Monsters Pendulum Summoned from the Extra Deck must be Summoned to the Extra Monster Zone or your Main Monster Zone pointed to by a Link Monster.
Note that if a card effect such as Loading... is applying, a Pendulum Monster that would be sent to the GY will be banished instead instead of going to the Extra Deck!
How do scales work with Pendulum Summoning?
Pendulum Summoning utilizes two Pendulum Scales of different values to Pendulum Summon monsters with Level(s) between the two Pendulum Scale values from your hand and/or face-up Extra Deck to the field.
Be careful with your scales! If you have two scale values that are 1 or less from each other, there are no Levels in between that you can Pendulum Summon.
During your Main Phase, activate Pendulum Monster Cards as Spell Cards in your leftmost and rightmost Spell & Trap Zones. These Spell & Trap Zones also become Pendulum Zones.
After you have one in each Pendulum Zone, once per turn during your Main Phase, declare that you’re Pendulum Summoning.
Check the Pendulum Scales on the sides of your two Pendulum Monster Cards, then Special Summon as many monsters as you want from your hand and as many face-up Pendulum Monsters from your Extra Deck, whose Levels are in between those Pendulum Scales.
A Link Monster is the newest kind of monster with the ability to increase the number of other Link and Pendulum Monsters you can Summon from your Extra Deck. In addition to the one Extra Monster Zone you can usually use, you can also Link Summon monsters from the Extra Deck to any of your Main Monster Zones that have a Link Monster’s red arrow or "Link Marker/Arrow" pointing to it.
When a Link Monster’s red arrow points to a monster, those monsters are "linked". When two Link Monsters have red arrows that point at each other, they are "co-linked”.
Each Link Monster has its own "recipe" in order to Link Summon it as well as a Link Rating. This is the number of Link Arrows that monster has and the number of monsters needed to Summon it. As seen on Loading... , the Link Materials are 2 monsters with a Link Rating of 2. This means we need two monsters with a material count of two.
2 monsters Link Summon into LANphorhynchus
Normally, 1 monster equals 1 Link Material. But when you use a Link Monster as material for another Link Summon, you can count it as either one monster or as a number of monsters equal to its Link Rating. For example, if you want to Summon a Link 3 monster that requires two or more materials in its “recipe”, you can either use three monsters (each counts as one material) or else a Link 2 Link Monster (counts as one or two materials) and a second monster (counts as one material).
Link Monsters have no DEF and cannot ever be in Defense Position. They can’t be changed to Defense Position by a card effect. They can’t even be flipped into face-down Defense Position. Similar to how Xyz Monsters are unaffected by effects that check a monster's Level.
If your opponent has a monster in the Extra Monster Zone, it’s still a monster they control so you can’t attack directly. You have to battle and destroy all their monsters first, including the one in the Extra Monster Zone.
If you take control of your opponent’s monster in the Extra Monster Zone, it moves to your Main Monster Zone. When it goes back to your opponent, it goes to their Main Monster Zone, not the Extra Monster Zone.
As long as the materials meet the requirements of the Link Monster you want to Summon, you can use a Token or Trap Card that is treated as a monster as the Link Material.
Remember that when you Link Summon, you need to meet three goals:
- The amount of materials you use match the Link Rating (Link Monsters count as one OR their own Link Rating).
- The number of materials you use meets the number specified in the materials line or “recipe”.
- The materials match any other requirements in the materials line (such as only Effect Monsters, or only a specific Type of monster).
Check the materials of the Link Monster you want to Summon.
During your Main Phase, declare that you are Link Summoning, send a number of face-up monsters from your field to the Graveyard equal to the Link Rating of that Link Monster. They must also match the material requirements listed in the monster’s “recipe” written on the card.
Place the Link Monster from your Extra Deck in the Extra Monster Zone, or one of your Main Monster Zones that another Link Monster is pointing to.
Special Summoning with Card Effects
Monsters can also be Special Summoned onto the field through the effect of another card. This is different from “Special Summon Monsters.” You cannot use a card effect to Special Summon those monsters from your hand, Deck, or the Graveyard unless it was properly Special Summoned first. For example, if a Synchro Monster is sent from your Extra Deck to the Graveyard without being Synchro Summoned, you cannot use a Spell Card to Special Summon it from the Graveyard, because Synchro Monsters have to be properly Synchro Summoned first, before they can be Special Summoned by another card’s effect. This applies to all Extra Deck monsters as well as some Main Deck monsters.
Monster Tokens are monsters that appear on the field as the result of a card’s effect. They are not included in the Deck, and cannot be sent anywhere other than the field, such as the hand or Graveyard. When a Token is destroyed or returned to the hand or Deck, they are simply removed from the field instead. You can use official Token cards or use coins, card sleeves, or any similar marker (as long as it can indicate Attack Position or Defense Position) as Monster Tokens and play them in Monster Zones. Each Monster Token takes up one of your five Monster Zones. Their battle position is always either face-up Attack Position or face-up Defense Position. Tokens cannot be used as an Xyz Material. Tokens on the field are treated as Normal Monsters. At no point can a Token ever be face-down (Ex: Loading... ) NOR be used as a cost that moves a card to a specific location (Ex: Loading... ).
Magic Ruler? No, Spell Ruler!
Spell Cards can normally be activated only during your Main Phase, and help you out with different effects. Spell Cards have many powerful effects, like destroying other cards or strengthening monsters. Save these cards in your hand until you can get the best results out of them.
That being said, there are also different types of Spell Cards indicated in the upper right corner of the Card that you can utilize to gain an advantage in a Duel!
Normal Spell Cards have single-use effects. To use a Normal Spell Card, announce its activation to your opponent, placing it face-up on the field. If the activation succeeds, then you resolve the effect written on the card. After resolving the effect, send the card to the Graveyard.
These Spell Cards are used to perform Ritual Summons. Use these cards in the same way as you would use Normal Spell Cards.
These cards remain on the field once they are activated, and their effect continues while the card stays face-up on the field. By using Continuous Spell Cards, you can create lasting positive effects with a single card, which is great but there’s the chance that the opponent will remove it from the field before you benefit from the effect.
These cards give an extra effect to 1 face-up monster of your choice (either your own or your opponent’s, depending on the card). They remain on the field after they are activated. The Equip Spell Card affects only 1 monster (called the equipped monster), but still occupies one of your Spell & Trap Zones. Mousing over or tapping the Equip Spell Card will show you what monster it is equipped to. If the equipped monster is destroyed, flipped face-down, or removed from the field, its Equip Cards are destroyed.
These cards go in your Field Zone and stay there. Each player can have one Field Spell Card on their own side of the field. To use another Field Spell, send your previous one to the Graveyard. Many Field Spell effects apply to BOTH players. These cards may be placed facedown in the Field Zone, but are not active until flipped face-up.
These are special Spell Cards that can be activated during any Phase of your turn, not just your Main Phase. You can also activate them during your opponent’s turn if you Set the card face-down first, but you cannot activate the card in the same turn you Set it.
Trap Cards will help you out with different effects, just like Spell Cards. The big difference between them is that you can activate Trap Cards during your opponent’s turn. Many Spell Cards have effects useful for offense, but Trap Cards have the ability to surprise the opponent by disrupting their attacks and strategies. Using Trap Cards can sometimes be tricky, since your opponent might have to do certain things before you can unleash them.
Before you can activate a Trap Card, you must Set it on the field first. You cannot activate a Trap in the same turn that you Set it, but you can activate it at any time after that—starting from the beginning of the next turn
Likewise with Spell Cards, Trap Cards also have different types as depicted by their icon.
Normal Trap Cards have single-use effects and once their effects are resolved, they will be sent to the Graveyard, just like Normal Spell Cards. They are also similar to Normal Spell Cards because once activated, their effects are not likely to be stopped. However, your opponent can destroy your face-down Trap Cards on the turn they were Set, or before the time is right to activate them. Because of this, you must be smart about how you use your Trap Cards.
Just like Continuous Spell Cards, Continuous Trap Cards remain on the field once they are activated and their effects continue only while they are face-up on the field. Some Continuous Trap Cards have abilities similar to the Ignition Effects or Trigger Effects that can be found on Effect Monster Cards. Continuous Trap Cards can have effects that limit your opponent’s options, or that slowly damage your opponent’s LP.
These Trap Cards are normally activated in response to the activation of other cards, and may have abilities like negating the effects of those cards. These types of Traps are effective against Normal Spell Cards or Normal Trap Cards, which are otherwise hard to stop. Many Counter Trap Cards require a cost to activate them, but they can only be chained to by other Counter Traps.
Some Trap Cards may Summon themselves as monsters. When this happens, if they're in a Spell/Trap Zone, they are moved to the Main Monster Zone and no longer take up the zone they were moved from.
There are two types of Trap Monsters:
- Still treated as a Trap.
- NOT still treated as a Trap.
If they are still treated as a Trap and flipped face-down by an effect such as Loading... , they will be re-set to any of your unoccupied Spell/Trap Zones. If there are no unoccupied zones left, they will be automatically destroyed by game mechanics and sent to the GY.
If they are NOT still treated as a Trap, they will behave only as monsters do and are unaffected by any cards that would affect Trap Cards.
Spell Cards can be Set face-down on the field like Trap Cards. However, the rules for the two types of cards are different. Spell Cards can be activated during the Main Phases even in the same turn that you Set them (except for Quick-Play Spell Cards). Setting them does not allow you to use them on your opponent’s turn; they still can only be activated during your Main Phase. You can Set a Spell Card face-down on the field to bluff your opponent into thinking you have a powerful Trap.
Both players start with five cards and 8000 LP.
A Duel proceeds in a series of turns divided into six Phases.
- Draw Phase
- Standby Phase
- Main Phase 1
- Battle Phase (optional)
- Main Phase 2 (only if Battle Phase is conducted)
- End Phase
These turns repeat until one of the three following victory conditions occurs:
- The opponent's LP are reduced to 0.
- The opponent must draw a card(s) and is unable to do so.
- The conditions for a card that win the Duel are met.
This is the first phase. The player whose turn it is (the “turn player”) draws one card from the top of their Deck. A player with no cards left in their Deck and unable to draw loses the Duel. After you draw, Trap Cards or Quick-Play Spell Cards can be activated before proceeding to the Standby Phase.
IMPORTANT: The player who goes first cannot draw during the Draw Phase of their first turn.
Some cards have effects that activate, or costs you must pay, in the Standby Phase. If you do not have any of these cards on the field, you can still activate Trap Cards or Quick-Play Spell Cards before moving on to your Main Phase 1.
Main Phase 1
This is when you play most of your cards: you can Normal Summon, Set, or change the battle position of a monster, activate a card’s effect, and Set Spell and Trap Cards. These actions can be done in any order you want, but some actions have restrictions.
During the Main Phase, you can:
Summon or Set a Monster
There is no limit to the number of times you can Flip Summon or Special Summon during a turn, but you can only Normal Summon or Set a monster (including a Tribute Summon) once per turn.
Change Your Monsters’ Battle Positions
This includes Flip Summoning a monster, or changing the position of a face-up monster to face-up Attack or Defense Position. You can change the position of each monster you control, except in three cases.
- You cannot change the battle position of a monster that was played onto the field this turn.
- You cannot change it in Main Phase 2 if the monster attacked during the Battle Phase.
- You cannot change it if you have already changed its battle position once this turn.
Activate a Card or Effect
You can activate Spell and Trap Cards, or the effects of Spell, Trap, or Effect Monster Cards as many times as you want during this phase, as long as you can keep paying any costs involved.
Set Spells and Traps
You can Set Spell and Trap Cards face-down in your Spell & Trap Zone during this phase, as long as you have space.
Now it’s time to battle with your Monster Cards! This phase is divided into steps. You do not have to conduct a Battle Phase every turn, even if you have a monster on the field.
IMPORTANT: The player who goes first cannot conduct their Battle Phase on their first turn.
The Battle Phase will be broken down in the "Battle Phase" chapter.
Main Phase 2
If you conducted your Battle Phase, your turn moves to Main Phase 2 afterwards. The actions a player can perform in this phase are the same as in Main Phase 1. However, if the player already did something in Main Phase 1 that has a limit to the number of times it can be done, the player cannot do it again in Main Phase 2. Consider if you want to activate and Set Spell & Trap Cards, or Summon or Set a monster (if you didn’t do that in Main Phase 1) based on your situation after the Battle Phase. Use this phase to prepare for the opponent’s turn.
Announce the end of your turn, and if there are any cards on the field which say “…during the End Phase…” in their text, resolve those effects in this phase.
If you have more than six cards in your hand at the end of this phase, select and discard cards to the Graveyard until you only have six cards in your hand. This process will repeat in the event you reach more than six cards again due to triggers caused by you (or your opponent) while discarding cards for the hand size limit.
Time to build Chain Links
What are Chains?
Chains are a way to order the resolution of multiple card effects. They are used when the effects of more than one card are activated at once (see "SEGOC" chapter), or when a player wants to use an effect after a card has been played, but BEFORE that card has an effect on the game. If a card’s effect is activated, the opponent is always given a chance to respond with a card effect of their own, creating a Chain!
If your opponent responds with an effect, then you can choose to respond and add another effect to the Chain. If your opponent does not respond, you may activate a second effect yourself and create a Chain to your own card’s activation.
Both players continue to add effects to the Chain until they both wish to add nothing else, then you resolve the outcome in reverse order – starting with the last card that was activated.
Some cards are just faster than others
Every type of card effect has a Spell Speed between 1 and 3. If you want to respond to a card effect in a Chain, you have to use an effect with Spell Speed 2 or higher, and it cannot have a lower Spell Speed than the effect you are responding to.
Spell Speed 1
- Spells (Normal, Equip, Continuous, Field, Ritual)
- Effect Monster’s effects (Ignition, Trigger, and Flip)
This is the slowest of all Spell Speeds. These cards cannot be activated in response to any other effects. Typically, these effects cannot be Chain Link 2 or higher, unless multiple Spell Speed 1 effects are activated simultaneously.
Spell Speed 2
- Traps (Normal, Continuous), Quick-Play Spells,
- Effect Monster’s Quick Effects
These cards can be used to respond to a Spell Speed 1 or 2 effect, and can typically be activated during any phase.
Spell Speed 2 effects are also generally known as "Fast Effects".
Spell Speed 3
- Counter Traps
This is the fastest of all Spell Speeds and can be used to respond to a card of any Spell Speed. Only another Spell Speed 3 card may be used to respond to these cards.
Resolving a Chain
Every time a new Chain Link is made, they are stacked up in the order that the cards are activated. Once the Chain is completed, the outcome is resolved starting with the most recent card to be activated at the top of the Chain and proceeding down to Chain Link 1. So let's look at how a Chain works with a Real World example:
Now that the Chain is built, we resolve it with the highest Chain Link first and proceed backwards.
Then the effect of Loading... (Chain Link 1) is resolved successfully, destroying all Spell and Trap Cards on the field, allowing the turn player to attack without interference from Spell or Trap Cards.
The turn player always starts with Priority, or the choice to activate a card first, in each phase or step of their turn. As long as the turn player has Priority, the opponent cannot activate cards or effects, except for effects that activate automatically, like Trigger or Flip effects.
The turn player can either:
- Use Priority to play a card or activate an effect OR
- Pass Priority to the opponent so they can activate an effect.
A player must pass Priority to the opponent when moving on to the next phase or step. In Master Duel, this is handled automatically. In the TCG/OCG, you would announce you are leaving each Phase at which point the opponent may choose to activate one of their Spell Speed 2+ effects.
If the opponent decides to activate an effect while the turn player is attempting to leave a Main Phase, the turn player may decide to continue that Main Phase instead of proceeding into the next phase.
Priority (and chain building in general) is processed according to the following chart:
Simultaneous Effects Go On Chain or SEGOC is a term used to describe how simultaneous Trigger effects activating get built on a Chain.
If effects of Spell Speed 1 cards (like Trigger Effects) are activated at the same time, they will be resolved in a special Chain. This Chain is made starting with the turn player’s mandatory effects.
If there is only 1 effect, that will be Chain Link 1. If there are two or more effects, the turn player builds the Chain starting with their mandatory effects, in any order. Then the opponent continues the Chain with their mandatory effects in any order. Afterwards, the turn player adds their optional effects in any order, and finally the opponent adds their optional effects in any order.
If there are no further public Trigger effects, the player who did not add the most recent chain link will have the opportunity to activate a Spell Speed 2 or higher effect as they will have the priority to do so. After this point, private Triggers (from the hand) may now be activated alongside other Spell Speed 2 effects.
Here's an Example:
- Chain Link 1: Loading...
Because Salamangreat Balelynx is a public Trigger, it will be Chain Link 1 as it is Player A's turn. Player B has no public Triggers; but, because Salamangreat Gazelle is a private Trigger, Player A must pass priority to Player B before they can activate it. Player B decides to add:
- Chain Link 2: Loading...
Player B has now passed their priority back to Player A which means Player A can now add:
- Chain Link 3: Loading...
Alternatively, if Player A has Loading... in their hand, they could opt instead to:
- Chain Link 3: Loading...
then, if Player B had no response:
- Chain Link 4: Loading...
This is because private Trigger effects have the same priority as Spell Speed 2 effects!
This can be used to the turn player's advantage quite a lot as only they know what private Triggers have yet to be revealed.
But be careful with certain private Triggers, only one private Trigger that can Special Summon itself from the hand can be activated each Chain.
Problem-Solving Card Text, or PSCT, is the language that Yu-Gi-Oh! cards are written to specify card effects to the point that most situations can be resolved by logically interpreting the card text.
Problem-Solving Card Text uses specific words with very deliberate and particular meanings in order to explain how a card or effect functions. How to interpret the text is important to understanding how to apply card text to the game.
NOTE: These rules only apply to cards that have been written in PSCT, cards written Pre-PSCT may use similar terms but may behave differently than PSCT written cards.
If there is a discrepancy between the basic rules and a card’s effect, the card effect takes precedence. For example, a monster can only attack once per turn, but with a card effect, it is possible to attack twice.
All card effects that make a Chain Link include a colon " : " or a semicolon " ; " somewhere in their text (possibly both). If a card effect does not use either, it does not make a Chain Link.
The activation of a Spell or Trap Card always makes a Chain Link, but its effect that resolves with the card itself (if any) does not necessarily use a colon or semicolon. This effect is usually the first effect listed in the card's text.
Text before the colon " : " describes activation conditions (limits on when or how often a card or effect can be activated). These conditions only need to be met when the card is activated.
- Conditions other than target requirements that have to be met during both activation and resolution are specifically noted in a separate sentence after the effect sentence (e.g. Loading... , Loading... ).
Text before the semicolon " ; " (but after the colon, if any) describes anything that happens when that card or effect is activated (such as costs and targeting).
- NOTE: TARGETING IS NOT A COST.
This can be summarized to:
Condition or Activation Requirements ( : ) Things you must do when activating the effect & costs ( ; ) Effect ( . )
"When this card is Normal Summoned ( : ) You can target 1 Level 2 or lower monster in your GY ( ; ) Special Summon that target in Defense Position, but negate its effects."
Resolving Targeting Effects
The terms "that target" or "those targets" and "it" or "they/them" have specific meanings in the resolution of the effect.
"That target" and "those targets" indicate that targets must still meet the target requirements at resolution to be affected.
"Both (those) targets" and "all three (targets)" indicate that all targets must still meet the target requirements at resolution for any of them to be affected.
"It" and "they/them" indicate that the targets do not need to meet the target requirements at resolution, only when targeted.
Loading... is activated, targeting five monsters in Player A's GY. During a higher Chain Link, one of the targets has been removed from the GY.
When it comes time for Pot of Avarice to resolve, because it specifies all five, it will fail to shuffle all five targets back as it no longer "sees" all of its targets. Pot of Avarice will resolve without effect.
Mastering the specific wording around targeting is key to know if your effects will still resolve the way you want them to.
The conjunctives "and", "and if you do", "also", "also, after that" and "then" have specific meanings. All effects when activated, unless negated, will always resolve as much as possible. How they resolve is based off of their conjunctives (if any).
In "Do A, then do B", B happens after A. These things happen in sequence, not simultaneously. A is required for B, but NOT vice-versa: if A does not happen, then stop; even if B cannot happen, you still do A.
In "Do A and B", both A and B happen simultaneously. BOTH A and B are required. If you cannot do both, you do nothing.
"And if you do"
In "Do A, and if you do, do B", both A and B happen simultaneously. A is required for B, but NOT vice-versa: if A does not happen, then stop; even if B cannot happen, you still do A.
In "Do A, also do B", both A and B happen simultaneously. Neither is required for the other to occur.
"Also, after that"
In "Do A, also, after that, do B", B happens after A. These things happen in sequence, not simultaneously. Neither is required for the other to occur.
In order to activate a card or effect, you must be able to resolve all mandatory portions of the effect at the initial point of activation.
If an effect, or the gamestate itself, prevents you from resolving any mandatory portion of an effect, it cannot be activated even if it uses a conjunctive that does not require both portions to resolve successfully.
Loading... cannot be activated if your Deck contains 11 or less cards as the gamestate recognizes you will not be able to draw two cards after paying the cost.
Loading... cannot be activated if there are no monsters on the field as there's no monsters for it to attempt to destroy.
Loading... cannot be activated if you do not have any Warrior monsters in your deck.
Loading... can be activated and upon resolution, choose an effect monster that is negated, 0 ATK, or both as both portions of the effect will attempt to resolve regardless.
Loading... can be activated if either you or your opponent has zero cards in their hand, or if your opponent has less cards in their Deck than the number of cards in their hand as at least one card will be attempted to be drawn.
There will be, however, times where the activation of an effect was legal, but it can no longer resolve due to an effect higher in the chain. In this case, the effect will still attempt to resolve as much as possible following its conjunctive.
Nibiru, the Primal Being will still attempt to resolve, tributing all face-up monsters on the field, since El Shaddoll Winda is no longer applying its continuous effect, Nibiru, the Primal Being will proceed to then Summon a "Primal Being Token".
Loading... is activated and sends the only remaining Level 4 or lower Lightsworn monster in your Deck to the GY.
Since Charge of the Light Brigade can no longer add any monsters from your Deck, it will resolve without effect.
Since Vanity's Emptiness prevents either player from Special Summoning, Emergency Teleport cannot perform its effect and will resolve without effect.
Dragonmaid Sheou will still negate the activation and return itself to the Extra Deck, but since there are no more House Dragonmaids in Player B's Extra Deck, no Summon will occur.
Trigger effects can only activate if they are in the location where they meet their trigger when the current Chain (if any) finishes resolving.
If a monster has a Trigger effect that activates when it's Special Summoned, but is no longer on the field when it would activate, it will never have the chance to activate and simply be ignored.
Note that if a Trigger effect is activated, it will always try to resolve no matter where the card ends up afterwards unless the effect states otherwise.
Cyber Angel Benten met its trigger when it reached the GY for the cost of the effect, but since it was banished by D.D. Crow, it's no longer in its trigger location and will not activate.
Satellarknight Deneb is Summoned by Call of the Haunted, where it meets its trigger on the field. But during Chain Link 1, Mystical Space Typhoon destroys the Call of the Haunted, resulting in the destruction of Satellarknight Deneb. Since Satellarknight Deneb is no longer where it met its trigger, it will not activate.
Lingering effects are a special type of effect that continuously applies or remains overall after the initial effect has resolved - not to be confused with Continuous effects!.
The most common lingering effect is any card that Summons a Token.
Once applied, they cannot be negated by any means, but some lingering effects can be overruled by another effect that applies an opposing "cannot" or an alternative lingering/continuous effect.
The basic rule of thumb when it comes to lingering effects is:
- "You cannot" supersedes "Do this".
Some examples of conflicting lingering effects:
Cards do what they say they do
As mentioned prior, the wording on card effect text is very deliberate. If a card effect says it does something, that is exactly what it does. If, after reading the card, you think it does something else without the card explicitly stating so, such as thinking Loading... negates both Spell Cards and monster effects, then it does not.
Continuous Cards & Effects
Some cards/effects require being face-up in order to successfully resolve. If the card is no longer face-up when it would resolve, it will resolve without effect.
While some cards/effects will state in their effect text explicitly if they need to remain face-up, some card types inherently must remain face-up to resolve.
Field Spells, Equip Spells, Continuous Spells/Traps, and Pendulum Scales all require being face-up in order to resolve successfully.
The most well-known example of this occurring is:
Since Mystical Space Typhoon destroys Call of the Haunted before it can resolve, and since Call of the Haunted is a Continuous Trap, it will resolve without effect.
NOTE: This does not mean Mystical Space Typhoon negated the Call of the Haunted as it does not state it does in its card text.
Some cards will move themselves or other cards to another location when paying cost or while resolving an effect. This is known as changing location. When a card is moved to a different location, it is treated as an entirely different copy of the card. When this occurs as part of an activation however, the card/effect resolves where it activates.
Because the effect of the Rescue Rabbit on the field was negated, it will resolve negated since the effect still resolves on the field.
NOTE: This is different than Loading... as Skill Drain only negates monsters that are face-up on the field when they resolve.
Because the Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring discarded itself for cost, Invoked Mechaba will still negate the activation, but will fail to banish it as Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring is no longer in the hand and is treated as a different card.
Leaving the Field
Some monsters have effects that activate when they “leave the field”. For example, Loading... . These effects can activate when the monster is sent to the Graveyard, or is banished. When a monster on the field is shuffled into the Main Deck, Extra Deck, hand, or becomes an Xyz Material, it is no longer a card on the field, however its effects that activate when it “leaves the field” will not activate.
"Unaffected" means Unaffected
Cards that have, or are given, an effect that makes them unaffected means they cannot be affected in any way by what they are protected against.
This, however, does not create violations in Activation Legality.
Player A controls only Loading... . Player B is still allowed to activate Loading... even though its effect will not destroy anything as Dark Hole will still attempt to do so. Silent Swordsman LV5 will not be destroyed as it is unaffected.
Cards that apply a non-activating protection to themselves such as Loading... are generally Continuous effects.
If an unaffected card that applies the protection to itself becomes negated or loses its protection, then it is no longer unaffected and card effects will apply normally to it.
Player A controls Loading... and places another card on the field. Player A and B then create the following Chain:
The Chain resolves backwards and Number 59: Crooked Cook is now negated and will remain negated even if the new card Player A set leaves the field as its Continuous effect is now negated and will not re-apply.
Some effects, when activated or applied, will conflict with each other. In this case, the following is applied:
Whichever effect resolves most recently will be the one that applies.
While sometimes appearing to be Continuous Effects, conditions are not part of card effects and cannot be negated.
Examples of conditions:
Summoning conditions such as those of Loading... (Cannot be Special Summoned from the Graveyard), Loading... (This card cannot be Normal Summoned or Set), and Loading... (Cannot be Normal Summoned or Set. Must be Special Summoned (from your hand) by...).
Material limitations such as those of Loading... (When using this card as a Synchro Material Monster, the other Synchro Material Monster is 1 monster in your hand), Loading... (Cannot be used as Fusion Material), and Loading... (Cannot be used as a Synchro Material, except for the Synchro Summon of a "Majestic" monster).
Activation limitations such as those of Loading... (This card cannot attack the turn you activate this effect) and Loading... (You cannot Summon other monsters the turn you activate this card (but you can Normal Set)).
Match winner conditions such as that of Loading... .
Sometimes, a combination of card effects in the game will result in the exact same action(s) occurring multiple times in a row. This is called a "Loop". If a loop is controllable, meaning the player executing the loop is able to end the loop at any point during or after an iteration has completed, the loop is a Legal Loop.
If a loop is uncontrollable, meaning the player (or gamestate action) is unable to end the loop, it is an Illegal Loop.
NOTE: In the TCG/OCG, uncontrollable loops that result in a win condition are legal and will repeat iterations until the win condition is achieved. In Master Duel, the loop iteration will stop after ten iterations.
If Master Duel detects an illegal loop has been created, then depending on the loop (some will iterate, some will not) will be cancelled and the card denoted as the "problem card" (if any) will be destroyed by game mechanics.
Some cards have maintenance costs. These are a special kind of cost that cannot be chained to and typically occur during the Standby Phase. Most of the time, these costs are mandatory and cannot be negated.
You cannot proceed to the next phase until any and all maintenance costs are paid.
The Battle Phase is broken down into 4 Steps.
- Start Step
- Battle Step
- Damage Step
- End Step
The Battle Step and Damage Step are repeated each time you attack with a monster.
This step starts the Battle Phase. The turn player automatically enters this step when they decide to enter the Battle Phase.
Remember, the player who goes first cannot conduct a Battle Phase in their very first turn.
Select one monster on your side of the field to attack with, and one of your opponent’s monsters as your attack target, and then declare the attack. If your opponent does not have any monsters on the field, you can attack directly. Play then proceeds to the Damage Step. Afterwards, the attacking player returns to the Battle Step, and repeats this procedure.
Each face-up Attack Position monster you control is allowed on attack per turn. You do not have to attack with a monster if you don’t want to.
In this step, the players calculate the result of the battle and whatever damage is done. (See "Damage Step" chapter.)
After finishing the Damage Step, return to the Battle Step.
After you’ve resolved all your battles by repeating the Battle and Damage Steps, and you have no more monsters you want to attack with, announce to your opponent that you are ending your Battle Phase.
The turn player at this point will now proceed to Main Phase 2.
Replays during Battle
After you’ve announced your attacking monster and the attack target monster during a Battle Step, the attack target might be removed from the field, or a new monster may be played onto the opponent’s side of the field before the Damage Step, due to a card’s effect. This causes a “Replay." When this occurs, you can choose to attack with the same monster again, or choose to attack with a different monster, or choose not to attack at all.
Note that if you attack with a different monster, the first monster is still considered to have declared an attack, and it cannot attack again this turn.
After a player declares their attack target and priority is passed between both players, the game proceeds to the Damage Step.
There are five distinct steps in the Damage Step:
- Start of the Damage Step
- Before Damage Calculation
- Perform Damage calculation
- After Damage Calculation
- End of the Damage Step.
Start of the Damage Step
You declare that you are entering the Damage Step.
A face-down monster being attacked is NOT flipped at this time.
What can happen?:
Effects that activate "at the start of the Damage Step".
Fast effects that alter ATK/DEF can be activated.
Before Damage Calculation
If the monster being attacked is face-down, flip it face-up.
If the monster has a Trigger Effect that activates by being flipped face-up, it does not activate yet. It will activate after damage calculation, even if the flipped monster leaves the Monster Zone before then.
What can happen?:
Cards and effects that activate "before damage calculation", such as Loading... , can be activated.
If a monster is flipped face-up and that monster conflicts with a "You can only control 1 […]," or "There can only be 1 […] on the field," effect, such as Loading... or Loading... , it will NOT be destroyed/removed from the field at this time.
Fast effects that alter ATK/DEF can be activated.
Perform Damage Calculation
Cards or effects that can activate "during damage calculation" activate/resolve, then the damage calculation is performed.
Compare ATK/DEF and apply damage to Life Points.
Determine whether either monster will be destroyed by battle or not, but do not send it to the Graveyard yet.
What can happen?:
- Effects that activate "during damage calculation".
- If an effect prevents a monster from being destroyed by this battle by doing something else "instead" (such as "Vicious Claw" returning itself to the hand), it is decided whether to apply or not at this point. The "instead" action will be done at the end of the Damage Step.
- In general, cards and effects that modify ATK/DEF cannot be activated at this point or for the rest of this Damage Step.
After Damage Calculation
Effects that activate as a result of battle happen here.
Trigger effects that activate by being flipped face-up, of monsters flipped face-up "before damage calculation," happen here.
A monster that was determined to be destroyed is still not sent to the Graveyard.
What can happen?:
Effects that activate "when this card battles" or "attacks or is attacked".
Effects that acitvate "when battle damage is inflicted" or "when you take damage".
Effects that activate "after damage calculation".
Effects that activate "when this card is flipped face-up".
If its name conflicts with a "You can only control 1 […]," or "There can only be 1 […] on the field," effect, the flipped monster will immediately be destroyed, unless it was destroyed by battle.
If "Rivalry of Warlords"/"Gozen Match" is active, and the flipped monster has the wrong Attribute/Type, it will be immediately sent to the Graveyard.
End of the Damage Step
If a monster was determined to be destroyed by the battle during damage calculation, send it to the Graveyard first.
Then effects that activate when a monster is destroyed by battle and sent to the Graveyard, activate now.
Then if all effects activates/resolves and you would end the Damage Step, effects that apply "until the end of the Damage Step" disappear
After the end of the Damage Step, return to the Battle Step. If the turn player does not want to attack again after that, go to the End Step.
What can happen?:
Effects that activate "when a monster is destroyed by battle".
Effects that activate "when a monster is destroyed by battle and sent to the Graveyard".
Effects that activate "when a monster destroys an opponent's monster by battle and sends it to the Graveyard".
Effects that activate "at the end of the Damage Step".
Monsters Destroyed by Battle
The following rules apply to monsters that were be destroyed by battle, but have not been sent to the Graveyard yet (or another appropriate location):
They are treated as "destroyed by battle" for Continuous/Continuous-like Effects that apply to those monsters, such as Loading... , and for effects that activate after damage calculation when a monster is destroyed by battle, such as Loading... .
Their Continuous Effects are no longer applied.
They cannot activate their optional Quick Effects, nor be used as a cost to activate an optional card or effect; however, this does not apply to mandatory effects, such as Loading... .
They cannot be targeted by cards or effects, have their battle positions changed, or have their ATK/DEF changed.
They still can have their effect(s) negated.
They cannot be returned to the hand by card effects, unless they are being returned instead of being sent to the Graveyard, such as with Loading... .
They can still be destroyed by card effect, sent to the Graveyard, or banished before being sent to the Graveyard as a result of battle.
Effect Activations in the Damage Step
In general, only specific types of cards can be activated during the Damage Step. They are as follows:
Counter Trap Cards.
Fast Effects that directly alter ATK/DEF. (Note: These may only be activated during the Start of the Damage Step, and Before Damage Calculation).
Fast Effects that negate the activation of an action.
Trigger Effects that activate when the card itself is moved in some way.
Cards whose text specify an action specific to the Damage Step.
Cards whose text say they can be activated during the Damage Step.
Cards who have rulings that state they can be activated during the Damage Step.
You calculate battle damage based on the battle position of the monster you are attacking. If you attack an Attack Position monster, compare ATK vs. ATK. If you attack a Defense Position monster, compare your monster’s ATK vs. the attacked monster’s DEF.
Attacking an ATK Position Monster
WIN: When your attacking monster’s ATK is higher than the ATK of the opponent’s monster, the attacking monster destroys the opponent’s monster and sends it to the Graveyard. The amount that your attacking monster’s ATK exceeds the ATK of your opponent’s monster is subtracted from your opponent’s LP as battle damage.
TIE: When your attacking monster’s ATK is equal to the ATK of the opponent’s monster, the result is considered a tie, and both monsters are destroyed. Neither player takes any battle damage.
LOSE: When your attacking monster’s ATK is lower than the ATK of the opponent’s monster, the attacking monster is destroyed and sent to the Graveyard. The amount that the opponent’s monster’s ATK exceeds the ATK of your attacking monster is subtracted from your LP as battle damage.
NOTE: 2 monsters with 0 ATK cannot destroy each other by battle.
Attacking a DEF Position Monster
WIN: When your attacking monster’s ATK is higher than the DEF of the opponent’s monster, the attacking monster destroys the opponent’s monster and sends it to the Graveyard. Neither player takes any battle damage.
TIE: When your attacking monster’s ATK is equal to the DEF of the opponent’s monster, neither monster is destroyed. Neither player takes any battle damage.
LOSE: When your attacking monster’s ATK is lower than the DEF of the opponent’s monster, neither monster is destroyed. The amount that the opponent’s monster’s DEF exceeds the ATK of your attacking monster is subtracted from your LP as battle damage.
If there are no monsters on your opponent’s side of the field, you can attack directly. The full amount of your attacking monster’s ATK is subtracted from the opponent’s LP as battle damage.
This information is taken from an article written by YGOrganization.
When modifying the ATK/DEF of a monster, there are 3 things that are checked to determine how it is applied:
- Is the value change Additive/Subtractive or setting to a new value?
- Does the effect activate?
- Does it modify current or Original ATK/DEF?
Depending on the answers, there are 6 possible ways to apply the modification:
- Activated effect modifier that increases/decreases the current ATK/DEF.
- Non-activated effect modifier that increases/decreases the current ATK/DEF.
- Activated effect modifier that sets current ATK/DEF to determined value.
- Non-activated effect modifier that sets current ATK/DEF to determined value.
- Activated effect modifier that sets original ATK/DEF to determined value.
- Non-activated effect modifier that sets original ATK/DEF to determined value.
Master Duel will handle all of this information for you, but this is helpful to know if you want to know why modifiers work the way they do.
Applying any effect that increases or decreases ATK/DEF.
Generally, regardless of what kind of effect was previously applied to a monster, increases/decreases are simply added to the existing value. This is true for both activated effects and non-activated effects.
Note that a monster’s ATK/DEF cannot be lower than 0. Decreases are still applied to a monster’s ATK/DEF even if they would become lower than 0, but will be cut off at 0. The leftover amount is still “stored”, so that it needs to be taken into account when you further increase a monster’s ATK/DEF.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , which reduces its ATK by 800. Since Harpie Girl has an original ATK of 500, its ATK becomes 0. If Loading... is then Summoned, its effect increases the ATK of Harpie Girl by 500. The ATK of Harpie Girl becomes 200, not 500. Once the effect of Forbidden Lance is no longer applying, Harpie Girl will return to 1000 ATK.
Applying an activated effect that sets ATK/DEF to a determined value.
These are activated effects that “halve”, “double”, or “switch” the current ATK/DEF of a monster, or make it “become” a specific value. Despite the variety of words used, they really all mean the same thing. Mechanically, a card like Loading... does not actually double a monster’s ATK, but rather it sets its ATK to a value that is twice its previous ATK. If the effect of Limiter Removal is applied to Loading... ’s 1400 ATK for example, it is making its ATK become 2800.
When these effects are applied, they overwrite any previous modifiers, even if they use those modifiers as a reference point to determine the new value (such as halving or doubling a monster’s current ATK), so those previous changes to the current ATK/DEF are not reapplied. These effects essentially lock in or freeze the ATK/DEF at the newly-determined value.
If the new effect stops applying after a certain duration, a continuously-applied effect’s modifiers are reapplied. However, changes that were made by previous activated effects to the current ATK/DEF are never reapplied, as they have essentially been erased.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , which increases its ATK to 2800. After that, the effect of Loading... is applied to that 7 Colored Fish, so its ATK is halved to 1400 and remains there for the duration of the turn. When the effect of Armored Bee expires, the ATK of 7 Colored Fish will be 1800. The effect of Aqua Jet is NOT reapplied.
Loading... has an original ATK of 3200 from its own effect, and has used its effect that makes it lose 800 ATK three times while on the field (losing a total of 2400 ATK), so its current ATK is 800. If Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess is equipped with Loading... and battles a Loading... , the effect of Moon Mirror Shield activates and sets Apollousa’s ATK to 2200. After damage calculation is over, its ATK returns to its original value of 3200. The 2400 ATK previously lost by its effect is NOT reapplied.
Loading... is equipped with Loading... , so that its ATK/DEF are 3100/2700. If Loading... is activated from the hand, the effect of Mage Power immediately adjusts as a result of Limiter Removal being placed into the Spell & Trap Zone, so the ATK/DEF of Barrel Dragon becomes 3600/3200. When Limiter Removal resolves, it doubles that 3600 ATK to 7200. Afterward, Limiter Removal is sent to the Graveyard, but Barrel Dragon’s ATK remains 7200. Even if more Spells/Traps are placed on the field, or even if Mage Power is destroyed, the ATK stays at 7200. (Note that Barrel Dragon’s DEF will drop to 2700 after Limiter Removal resolves, and will continue to be affected by Mage Power.)
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , and its original ATK becomes 1150. When the effect of Powercode Talker is activated during damage calculation, it sets its ATK to double its original ATK (which is now 1150), so its ATK becomes 2300. After damage calculation, its ATK returns to the value of its original ATK set by Shrink, 1150. Once the turn ends, its original and current ATK return to 2300.
Applying a non-activated effect that sets ATK/DEF to a determined value.
These are continuously-applied effects that change ATK/DEF to a specific value. Once these effects are applied, any previous non-activated increases/decreases are reapplied to the ATK/DEF. There are exceptions to this rule that will be explained later.
Loading... is equipped with Loading... , so its ATK is 500. If Relinquished then activates its effect and equips Loading... , the ATK of Relinquished becomes 2000 (with 1500 DEF), and then the 500 ATK from Black Pendant is reapplied. Its ATK becomes 2500.
When these effects are applied, any increases/decreases previously applied by an activated effect, or any changes to a monster’s current ATK/DEF set by an activated effect, will not reapply. However, the old modifiers are only masked and don’t disappear entirely. If the new effect stops applying, the first effect’s modifier will come back into effect.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , which increases its ATK to 2600. If Luster Dragon is equipped with Loading... , its ATK/DEF becomes 100. If Darkworld Shackles is destroyed before the end of this turn, the ATK of Luster Dragon becomes 2600 again until the end of the turn.
When two non-activated effects are applied that each set ATK/DEF to a determined value, whichever effect was applied most recently will take effect. If that new effect then stops applying, the first effect will be reapplied.
Player A has lower Life Points than Player B, and Player A controls a Loading... equipped with their own Loading... , so the ATK of that monster is 4600. If Player B equips their Megamorph to that Goblin Attack Force without any change in LP, its ATK becomes 1150. If Player B’s Megamorph is destroyed, the ATK of Goblin Attack Force returns to 4600.
Applying an activated effect that changes original ATK/DEF.
Effects that change a monster’s original ATK/DEF treat the new value as the original ATK/DEF, as if it were the value printed on the card. When these effects change a monster’s original ATK/DEF, previous increases or decreases are reapplied whether they are activated or non-activated.
Loading... is equipped with Loading... , which increases its ATK to 2500. If the effect of Loading... is applied to Flame Swordsman, its original ATK/DEF becomes 1600/1800, but the effect of Salamandra is reapplied, so its current ATK becomes 2300.
When an activated effect changes a monster’s original ATK/DEF, previously-applied activated effects that set the monster’s current ATK/DEF to a determined value are wiped, and not reapplied.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , which halves its ATK/DEF to 1200/900. If the effect of Loading... is applied to Black Rose Dragon, its original ATK is halved to 1200, and its current ATK will start over from there, so it remains 1200 as a result. When the effect of Shrink stops applying at the end of the turn, the ATK of Black Rose Dragon returns to 2400, while its DEF remains 900.
Loading... activates its effect targeting Loading... , and its current ATK/DEF becomes 2500/2100. If the effect of Loading... is applied, the ATK/DEF of Copycat each become 0. When the turn ends and the effect of Shield & Sword stops applying, the ATK/DEF of Copycat switch again, but its effect is never reapplied. Its ATK/DEF will be 0.
If these effects are applied while a non-activated effect is setting ATK/DEF to a determined value, that previous effect is reapplied once the original ATK/DEF is changed.
Loading... is equipped with Loading... , and its ATK/DEF are each 100. If the effect of Loading... is applied to Il Blud, its original ATK becomes 1050, but the effect of Darkworld Shackles is reapplied and its current ATK remains 100. If Darkworld Shackles is destroyed this turn, its ATK becomes 1050.
Loading... is equipped with Loading... , and its ATK is either 1200 or 4800. If the effect of Loading... is applied to Red-Eyes Black Dragon, its original ATK becomes 1200. The effect of Megamorph is reapplied, but since its effect is determined by the monster’s original ATK, the ATK of Red-Eyes Black Dragon will either be 600 or 2400.
When an activated effect changes a monster’s original ATK, any previous changes to the monster’s original ATK are wiped, even if the new original ATK is based on the old (modified) original ATK. This is important if the old change was permanent, but the new one is temporary.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , so the original ATK of Clear Wing Synchro Dragon becomes 1250 indefinitely. If the effect of Loading... is applied to that Clear Wing Synchro Dragon, its original ATK becomes 625. When the turn ends and the effect of Shrink stops applying, the original ATK of Clear Wing Synchro Dragon becomes 2500.
Applying a non-activated effect that changes original ATK/DEF.
As with the activated effects that change original ATK/DEF, previous increases or decreases are reapplied.
An Loading... gained 3000 ATK from its own effect. If it is equipped with Loading... , its original ATK becomes 1000 or 2400, but the boost from its own effect is reapplied, so its current ATK will be 4000 or 5400.
Previous changes that result from an activated effect setting a monster’s current ATK/DEF will remain active, so that the current ATK/DEF of the monster does not change even though the original ATK/DEF may change “behind the scenes”.
Similarly, if a monster is already being affected by a non-activated effect that sets its current ATK/DEF to a determined value, and then its original ATK is changed by a non-activated effect, the current ATK/DEF does not change even though the original does.
If the monster’s original ATK/DEF was previously changed by an activated effect, the non-activated effect changing its original ATK/DEF will apply.
The effect of Loading... is applied to Loading... , and its original ATK becomes 1750. If Ultimate Conductor Tyranno is equipped with Loading... , its original ATK becomes 1000 or 2400. If Unstable Evolution is destroyed before the end of the turn, the ATK of Ultimate Conductor Tyranno returns to 1750.
Exceptions – Applying a special non-activated effect that is always applied last.
As mentioned previously, certain effects that set a monster’s current ATK/DEF continuously are always reapplied last as new modifiers are introduced, breaking some of the rules established above. Even though they can be described in the same way – non-activated effects that set ATK/DEF to a determined value – they sometimes just work differently.
Firstly, we'll go over the effects that halve, double, or switch a monster’s current ATK/DEF continuously, since these have no counterparts to anything metioned previously, making them easier to categorize.
Also mentioned above, activated effects such as Loading... don’t truly double a monster’s ATK; they set a monster’s ATK to a value that is twice its previous ATK, and “freeze” it. The same is true with cards like Loading... , which switch a monster’s current ATK/DEF. The special effects discussed in this section actually do double, halve, or switch ATK/DEF, and any new modifiers are applied to the previous level of modification, but the special effect is then reapplied to the new total.
Loading... and Loading... are on the field. The effect of Super Crashbug switches the ATK/DEF of Number 17: Leviathan Dragon, to be 0/2000. If the effect of Number 17: Leviathan Dragon is activated, its ATK is recalculated with the effect of Super Crashbug being applied last. The ATK/DEF becomes 0/2500, not 500/2000. If Super Crashbug leaves the field, the ATK/DEF becomes 2500/0.
Loading... attacks while Loading... is on the field. Once the attack is declared, the ATK of Injection Fairy Lily is halved to 200. During damage calculation, if the effect of Injection Fairy Lily is activated, its ATK is recalculated. After its effect resolves, its ATK becomes 1700, which is 3400 halved.
Things get more complicated with activated effects that set ATK/DEF to a determined value applied while these special effects are applying. It was previously mentioned that when an effect like Loading... or Loading... resolves, any previous non-activated modification cannot be reapplied. However, cards like Mirror Wall and The Wicked Dreadroot will reapply.
The effect of Loading... is applied to a Loading... that attacked, so its ATK becomes 1200. If the effect of Cybernetic Magician is then activated, applying to itself, its ATK becomes 2000, but the effect of Mirror Wall immediately reapplies and halves that amount, so the ATK actually becomes 1000.
Loading... and Loading... are on the field. If Loading... is Normal Summoned, the effect of The Wicked Dreadroot is immediately applied, so the ATK/DEF of Aleister the Invoker becomes 500/900. The effect of Black Garden then activates, and halves the ATK of Aleister the Invoker to 250. Now, the effect of The Wicked Dreadroot is reapplied to the newly-determined value, and halves it further to 125. (The DEF remains 900.) If The Wicked Dreadroot leaves the field, the ATK of Aleister the Invoker becomes 250 again.
Lastly, we have the effects that continuously set a monster’s ATK/DEF to a specific value rather than halve, double, or switch it. As with the cards above, these are always applied last and supersede virtually all other effects that would modify ATK/DEF.
While their effects are applying, they (or the monsters their effects are applied to) are effectively immune to any ATK/DEF modifications. One thing to keep in mind again however, is that because they apply continuously, they simply mask the previously-applied modifiers rather than remove them entirely. If the new effect stops applying, the old effects are reapplied.
Loading... , Loading... , and Loading... are all on the field, and the ATK of Apple Magician Girl is 0 due to the effect of Water Dragon. If Loading... is activated, targeting Apple Magician Girl, its ATK becomes 3000, but the effect of Water Dragon is immediately reapplied and makes the ATK become 0 again. If Water Dragon is destroyed this turn, the ATK of Apple Magician Girl becomes 3000 again.
If Loading... attacks Loading... , Clear Vice Dragon will have 4800 ATK during damage calculation. If Loading... is activated during damage calculation, the ATK of Clear Vice Dragon becomes 2400, but the effect is reapplied and becomes 4800 again.
Loading... and Loading... are on the field, and the ATK/DEF of The Wicked Avatar are each 2400. If the effect of Salamangreat Heatleo is activated, targeting a Loading... in the Graveyard and The Wicked Avatar on the field, the ATK of The Wicked Avatar becomes 1900, but immediately reverts to 2400. During this turn, if the effects of The Wicked Avatar are negated, its ATK will become 1900 again and its DEF becomes 0.
Exceptions – Activated effects that work like non-activated effects, and vice versa.
A monster’s effect that sets its own current or original ATK/DEF upon being Summoned is generally considered a Continuous Effect, because it does not activate. However, these effects behave more like activated effects with respect to the interaction rules covered above. They are only applied once when the Summon is successful, and are not continuously-applying thereafter. Loading... is similar as well, although its effect is not applied upon being Summoned.
Loading... has an original ATK of 3200 by its own effect, and has used its effect to decrease its ATK by 800 twice, for a total decrease of 1600 ATK. If the effect of Loading... is applied to Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess, its original ATK becomes 1600, and the decrease of 1600 by its own effect is reapplied, making its current ATK 0. At the end of the turn, the original ATK of Apollousa, Bow of the Goddess becomes 0.
Loading... has its ATK/DEF halved by the effect of Loading... , so its ATK/DEF are 200/900. If Loading... is activated, the effect of Naturia Beetle is applied and its original ATK/DEF switch. Its current ATK/DEF will be 1800/400, meaning the effect of Blackwing – Gale the Whirlwind is no longer applied.
In the above examples, although the first effect of Loading... and the effect of Loading... are Continuous Effects, they behave more like previously-applied activated effects that change original ATK. (They are closer to something like Loading... than Loading... .)
Conversely, there are activated effects that behave like non-activated effects, such as Loading... and Loading... . The activated effect’s resolution is to begin applying a non-activated effect, which then takes effect for a certain amount of time. These cards have effects that activate and resolve, but the applied increase functions like a non-activated effect.
The effect of your Loading... has activated and resolved. Your Loading... with 3700 ATK attacks an opponent’s Defense Position Loading... , and during damage calculation the effect of Kazejin is activated. The ATK of Ritual Beast Ulti-Gaiapelio becomes 0, and damage calculation occurs with that value. After damage calculation concludes, the effect of Kazejin stops applying and the effect of Spiritual Beast Apelio reapplies, so the ATK of Ritual Beast Ulti-Gaiapelio becomes 3700.
After a monster has been Summoned, it starts to carry all sorts of information with it, such as:
- The time of its Summon.
- Exactly how it was Summoned.
- What effects are applying to it.
When a monster stops being face-up for a while, it 'forgets' some of that information, but remembers other parts. This can happen when it is flipped face-down by Loading... or temporarily banished by Loading... .
If a monster stops being face-up temporarily
It will forget:
- Any properties the cards used for its Summon (Tributes, materials, etc.) had at the time of the Summon.
- Any previously applied effects.
Loading... will forget whether it was Summoned by Tributing a Naturia Beast Monster.
A monster Summoned by Loading... will not be destroyed if face-down and then flipped face-up before the End Phase.
It will not forget:
- Which particular cards were used for its Summon.
- Whether it was Special Summoned or not.
- Whether it was Summoned that turn.
An Loading... that is flipped face-down and then back up will still be sent to the Graveyard during the End Phase.
Additionally, there are some variances between whether the monster was flipped face-down or temporarily banished.
It will forget:
- Where it was Summoned from.
- If it was Pendulum Summoned.
- The exact method used for its Summon.
Loading... Summoned by its own effect that is flipped face-down, then flipped face-up will have its original ATK of 3000.
It will not forget:
- If its Battle Position has changed that turn.
- If it attacked that turn.
It will not forget:
- Where it was Summoned from.
- If it was Pendulum Summoned.
"Negate" is a term that refers to stopping an action from being performed successfully or nullifying a card effect. Actions that can be negated include card and effect activations, Summons, and attacks.
While most of these actions can be stopped from "successfully" happening otherwise, only an effect that specifically states "negate" will cause them to be negated.
Even if any of these actions are negated, the cost, or right to redo it, is not refunded to the possessor of that negated action.
Negating Effect Instances
This form of negate is used in response to an activated effect, and while similar to negating activation result-wise, this form of negate causes the effect it responds to to resolve without effect; the card resolves but nothing will be done (for the purposes of missing the timing - See “If/When” chapter.
Destroying a card is distinct from negating its effect; even if a card is destroyed, its activated effect can still resolve, unless stated or mechanized otherwise. (Such as Continuous Spell Cards)
These effects must be directly chained to the effect you wish to negate.
This form of negate will continually cause the card to have its effect(s) negated. Effects negated in this form can still be activated - unless the negate states otherwise - but will resolve without effect, like the first form. However, this kind of negate may require targeting which will fail if the target leaves the field before the negate itself can resolve. Continuous Effects or Unclassified Effects can only be negated this way, and if they are, they simply no longer apply.
To negate the activation of a card or effect is to cause it to be treated as never being activated. If the activation of a card or effect is negated, because it does not resolve, the most recent action of the previous Chain Link is considered the last thing to happen instead (for the purposes of missing the timing).
If the activation of a Spell or Trap Card is negated, that card is sent to the Graveyard after the entire Chain it was activated in resolves if it has not already been moved somewhere, but it is not treated as being sent from the field - even if it was face-down on the field before its activation.
If the activation of a card effect is negated, that card remains in its current location unless a card effect specifies otherwise (such as Loading... specifying that the monster is destroyed).
If a card or effect has a restriction on how often it can be activated, the specific wording of the restriction affects whether negated activations count towards this limit.
Remember, negating the activation of a card/effect treats it as never being activated at all.
Use vs Activate
Some card effects utilize the following text in their effects:
- You can only use each/this effect of "" once per Duel/turn.
Using an activated effect means attempting to activate it, as long as you attempted the activation of one of those effects, you cannot attempt the activation of that effect again that Duel/turn.
- You can only use one effect of "" per turn (, and only once that turn).
If you attempted the activation of one of the effects, you can't attempt the activation of that effect again, or the activation of the other mentioned effect(s), that turn.
- You can only activate "" once per turn.
You can only successfully activate that card once per turn.
- You can only use/activate each/this/etc effect of "" once per turn /(and only once that turn).
This functions identically to 1 & 2 or 3 depending if it says "use" or "activate" respectively.
- (...)Once per turn(...): - (or some variation of that)
You can only use this effect of this face-up card once per turn, if it stops being face-up temporarily or there is another copy you can use that effect again.
- Once while this card is face-up on the field:
You can only use this effect once ever while that card is face-up. (Flipping face-down and back up will reset this limit.)
To negate a Summon is to prevent a monster from being successfully Summoned. If the Summon of a monster(s) is negated, that monster(s) is not considered to have been on the field at the time its Summon was negated (even if it is being Flip Summoned or is a Gemini monster being Normal Summoned again). Also, if a Summon is negated, the monster was considered not successfully Summoned, so Special Summon-only monsters (See "Nomi" chapter) cannot be Special Summoned by effects other than their specified method.
Only Summons that occur outside of a Chain can be negated, and even then only built-in Special Summons and Summons by game mechanics (Normal Summons, Flip Summons, Synchro Summons, Xyz Summons, Pendulum Summons and Link Summons) can be negated.
Some card effects, such as Loading... , cause a player to perform a Summon by game mechanics and specify that the Summon is performed "immediately after this card/effect resolves" to clarify that the Summon occurs outside of the resolution of an effect, so if that card or effect resolves as Chain Link 1 the Summon can be negated.
The Normal Summon of a monster with Loading... cannot be negated if it was activated as Chain Link 2 or higher (as the monster is Summoned while a Chain is resolving), but it can be negated by Loading... if Ultimate Offering is activated as Chain Link 1 (as the monster is Summoned immediately after the effect of Ultimate Offering resolves).
A negated Normal Summon still counts as the one Normal Summon/Set per turn, and a negated Pendulum Summon still counts as the one Pendulum Summon per turn. If a monster can only be Summoned once per turn in a particular way, and that Summon is negated, you may attempt to Summon that monster again.
If a monster that can only be Special Summoned once per turn has its Summon negated, it is treated as not being Summoned.
This means if its Summon is negated, you may attempt it again assuming it is legal to do so.
NOTE: This does not apply if the Summon negated starts a Chain Link, such as Loading... as the effect of the card in the Chain is negated, not the Summon itself.
To negate an attack is to stop a battle from taking place after an attack has been declared.
An attack can only be negated during the Battle Step, and if it is negated, the Damage Step does not occur. Even if an attack is negated, that monster is still considered to have declared an attack that turn, so it cannot declare another attack and cannot change its battle position in Main Phase 2.
Cards such as Loading... and Loading... do not negate attacks; instead, the attacking monster leaves the field during the Battle Step and the attack ends. If the monster does not leave the field, the attack continues.
If Loading... attacks while in Defense Position and the opponent activates Loading... , the attack continues as Total Defense Shogun is still on the field. Likewise, even if an attacking monster is banished by Loading... , Loading... cannot be activated because its attack was not negated.
Now or... then?
"Missing the Timing" or Missing the Activation Window
Missing the timing is the inability to activate a card or optional effect when it would meet its activation timing due to something else taking up its time to trigger and only occurs with a 'when' optional Trigger effect.
Fundamental Rule of 'When' Optionals:
- A ‘when’ optional effect can only be activated when its activation condition was ‘one of the last things to happen’.
This rule is saying that you literally need to activate a 'when' optional effect exactly when it meets its activation condition. The difficulty is in telling when something is 'one of the last things to happen' according to the game.
Note: This mechanic does not apply to mandatory effects, or effects that use ‘if’ instead of 'when'.
- Chain Link 1: Mystical Space Typhoon
- Chain Link 2: Raigeki Break
Resolve the Chain:
Chain Link 2 resolves: Raigeki Break destroys Fire Hand.
Chain Link 1 resolves: Mystical Space Typhoon destroys its target.
Fire Hand’s effect is a 'when' optional effect, and being destroyed was not the last thing to happen. Hence its effect cannot now be activated.
- Chain Link 1: Upstart Goblin
- Chain Link 2: Call of the Haunted
Resolve the Chain:
Chain Link 2 resolves: Blue-Eyes is Special Summoned
Chain Link 1 resolves: Player A draws a card.
Bottomless Trap Hole uses 'when', activating a Spell/Trap Card is optional to do, and the Summon of the monster was not 'one of the last things to happen', so it cannot be activated.
Player A activates the Field Spell Loading... .
Player B Chains Loading... to Player A’s activation of Geartown onto the field.
- Chain Link 1: Activation of Geartown onto the field.
- Chain Link 2: Mystical Space Typhoon targeting that Geartown.
Resolve the Chain:
Chain Link 2: Mystical Space Typhoon destroys Geartown.
Chain Link 1: Geartown resolves on the field (but it resolves without effect, as it has just been destroyed).
Note that Geartown was destroyed, but its effect on the field still tries to resolve on the field at Chain Link 1. In this situation, the trying to resolve is the last thing to happen, and destroying Geartown is not. So the trigger effect of Geartown misses its chance to activate.
- Chain Link 1: Activation of Geartown onto the field.
- Chain Link 2: Magic Jammer.
Resolve the Chain:
Chain Link 2: Magic Jammer negates the activation of Geartown, and destroys it.
Chain Link 1: (vanishes).
Because Magic Jammer negates the activation, the effect of Geartown on the field doesn’t attempt to resolve at all. As a result, we can see that the destruction of Geartown was in fact one of the last things to happen, so its trigger effect can activate as normal.
Now let's take a look at an example where there are simultaneous 'when' effects that meet their triggers.
- Chain Link 1: Dark Hole.
Resolve the Chain: Dark Hole destroys Bixi, Water of the Yang Zing and Card Trooper at the same time.
First we look at what effects want to activate. Bixi and Trooper’s effects were triggered, so they’re both candidates.
Let’s check if either is going to miss its activation timing. The destruction of Bixi and the destruction of Card Trooper were both the last thing to happen (and Card Trooper’s effect is mandatory), so both effects can activate.
Now that it's been decided what needs to activate, it's time to look at the order they need to activate in. Card Trooper is the non-turn player's mandatory effect, and Bixi is the turn player's optional effect, so according to the rules of SEGOC (see "SEGOC" chapter), they activate in the next Chain this order:
- Chain Link 1: Card Trooper
- Chain Link 2: Bixi.
The key thing to take away here is that the activation of Card Trooper does not throw off the activation of Bixi. The gamestate checked to see if its activation condition was the last thing to happen after the Chain resolved, and then put everything onto the Chain.
"Nomi" is a special term that refers to some Monster Cards. Nomi monsters cannot be Normal Summoned, Set or Special Summoned, except by fulfilling a special requirement. They always have the Summoning condition "Must be Special Summoned by (method)" as well as the Summoning condition "Cannot be Normal Summoned/Set".
Special Summon-only monsters, often referred to as Semi-Nomi monsters, are monsters with the card text "Cannot be Normal Summoned/Set. Must first be Special Summoned..."
Ritual, Fusion, Synchro, Xyz, and Link Monsters that are Special Summon-only monsters do not include the text "Cannot be Normal Summoned/Set." because it is unnecessary. These monsters cannot be Normal Summoned/Set by any means.
A Special Summon-only monster cannot be Special Summoned from the hand, Main Deck, Extra Deck, or Spell & Trap Zone, except by the specified method, unless the card effect ignores the Summoning conditions.
A Special Summon-only monster can be Special Summoned from the Graveyard or while banished as long as it was Special Summoned properly first. If the Summon of a Special Summon-only monster is negated (such as by Loading... ) it is not considered to have been properly Special Summoned. If a Special Summon-only monster is in the Graveyard or banished and was not Special Summoned properly, it cannot be Special Summoned by any means other than the proper method, even by ignoring the Summoning conditions. This contrasts to "Nomi" monsters, which can only be Summoned by their own effect, even after they have been properly Special Summoned.
After being properly Special Summoned, as long as that Monster Card remains on the field (even if face-down), in the Graveyard, or banished, it is considered properly Special Summoned.
Normal Summon... then Normal Summon?
Additional Normal Summons
The main bulk of extra Normal Summon effects read like Loading... :
- "During your Main Phase, you can Normal Summon/Set 1 monster in addition to your Normal Summon/Set. (You can only gain this effect once per turn.)"
Or Loading... :
- "If this card is Normal or Special Summoned: During your Main Phase this turn, you can Tribute Summon 1 monster, in addition to your Normal Summon/Set. (You can only gain this effect once per turn.)"
The bracketed part means exactly that: there’s no way to get 2 extra Summons this way. Even if you Summon 2 Gem-Knight Seraphinite, or 1 Gem-Knight Seraphinite and 1 Eidos the Underworld Squire, you still get only 1 extra Normal Summon.
You can conduct 2 Normal Summons/Sets this turn, not just 1.
- "Activate only as Chain Link 3 or higher. You can Normal Summon or Set up to 3 times this turn."
These effects change your default number of Normal Summons for the turn. Then you can put extra Summons on top. For example, Loading... + Eidos the Underworld Squire means that you get 2 default Normal Summons + 1 extra Summon from Eidos the Underworld Squire, for a total of 3.
Finally, there are a lot of extra Normal Summon effects that read like Yosenju Kama 1:
- *"If this card is Normal Summoned, you can: Immediately after this effect resolves, Normal Summon 1 “Yosenju” monster from your hand, except “Yosenju Kama 1”."
These let you Normal Summon when you’re finished resolving the Chain Link, in the exact same way that effects with similar text let you Special Summon in this way.
This type of effect is completely different to the earlier effects. Since the Summon is performed as part of the resolving effect itself, you can perform as many of these per turn as you have effects to do them, completely independently of the number of Normal Summons you’re allowed to do as a player that turn.
This town ain't big enough for the two of us
Taken from Rivalry/Gozen FAQ
You can only control one [...]
When this Trap Card’s activation resolves, look at the face-up monsters you control. If they all have the same Type/Attribute, you don’t have to do anything else. If there are different Types/Attributes, you choose one Type/Attribute to keep, and send your face-up monsters that aren’t that Type/Attribute to the Graveyard.
Loading... functions identical to these two cards, but in reverse, so you may only control specifically one Type of monster.
What monsters can I Summon while these cards are active?
While Rivalry/Gozen is active and you have a face-up monster, you cannot Summon monsters that are a different Type/Attribute from the monster(s) you already control.
So you can’t do any of the following to put a monster with the wrong Type/Attribute on your side of the field:
- Normal Summon
- Tribute Summon
- Flip Summon
- Xyz Summon
- Synchro Summon
- Fusion Summon
- Special Summon with a monster’s own effect.
- Activate a card or effect that has a mandatory effect to Special Summon a monster of the wrong Type/Attribute (including effects that could theoretically Summon anything, but currently cannot, such as Loading... when you control Spellcasters but the only monsters in the Graveyard are Zombies).
Also, you cannot attempt to perform the Summon of an incorrect Type/Attribute even if the Summon would cause the original Type/Attribute to leave the field.
This also applies to monsters that apply the same effect such as a "Kaiju" monster.
Under Loading... or Loading... , you cannot attempt to Summon a "Kaiju" monster if it would place the incorrect Type/Attribute on the field, even if the monster you would Tribute would leave the field.
If you or your opponent control(s) a "Kaiju" monster, neither player may Summon an additional/new "Kaiju" monster to the field to violate its condition of controlling only 1 "Kaiju" monster.
While Rivalry/Gozen is active, you can still Set monsters of any Type/Attribute, and you can Special Summon monsters of the wrong Type/Attribute face-down. But you can’t Flip Summon them afterwards, and they’re sent to the Graveyard after damage calculation if your opponent attacks them. (Also, in that case, you won’t get the effects of cards that need to be destroyed by battle and sent to the Graveyard, because they’re sent to the Graveyard by the Trap Card’s effect instead. But Flip Effects will still activate.)
Are there any Special Summoning cards and effects I can activate?
You can activate cards and effects that would Summon the same Type/Attribute monster as you have on the field.
You can also activate cards that would Summon more than one Type/Attribute of monster. The results depend on what you have on the field:
- If you DON’T control any monsters: You can activate cards that would Summon monsters with more than one Type/Attribute. All of them are Summoned, but you must immediately pick one Type/Attribute and send all others to the Graveyard.
- If you already DO control a monster: First of all, if the Summoning effect targets, you can only target monsters with the right Type/Attribute. If the Summoning effect does NOT target, you can activate it as long as it is possible to resolve the effect using only monsters with the right Type/Attribute. In this case, only the right monsters are Summoned to the field.
The same rule applies to the “Gladiator Beast” monsters. You can return a Gladiator Beast to your Deck and activate its effect as long as there is another Gladiator Beast in your Deck that you COULD Summon that is the same Type/Attribute as the one you returned. However, if you have no face-up monsters when the effect resolves, you can Summon any Type/Attribute of monster.
Can I take control of my opponent’s monster with the wrong Type/Attribute?
You can take control of an opponent’s monster that’s the wrong Type/Attribute with a card like Loading... . If you do, it’s sent to the Graveyard immediately after you gain control of it.
Anything else I should know?
If you control no face-up monsters, you can Summon a monster of any Type/Attribute. Also, if Rivalry/Gozen is being negated, you can Summon monsters of any Type/Attribute. If it stops being negated, you have to send monsters to the Graveyard until you control only one Type/Attribute again, just like if Rivalry/Gozen had just resolved.
What you cannot do
If the card name declared is a monster:
Normal Summon or Set
Be placed on the field
Be used as a Fusion, Synchro, Xyz, or Link Material
Manually change its battle position
Activate its effects that start a Chain (including mandatory effects)
Apply its Continuous Effects.
If the card name declared is a Spell/Trap:
Activate the card or any of its effects
Apply any Continuous Effects
Set (This also includes Setting a Spell/Trap Card by the effect of Loading... )
Playing it from the hand or Deck, such as by the effect of Loading... .
What you can do
If the card name declared is a monster:
Use it for other card effects. Examples: Loading... , Loading... . (It is perfectly legal to add it to your hand from any card location, target it, and/or affect it by any means - EXCEPTION: Except for the effect of performing a Fusion, Synchro, Xyz, or Link Summon except by Loading... ).
Use it for another monster’s Summoning Procedure. (This also includes using it as part of a Tribute Summon)
Apply any "lingering" effects.
If the card name declared is a Spell/Trap:
Use it to pay a cost. Example: Loading... .
Use it for other card effects. Examples: Loading... , Loading... . (It is perfectly legal to add this card to your hand from any location or have the declared card’s effects used via another card. Examples: Loading... , Loading... ).
Apply any lingering effects.
But what does it mean?
This section will list out all commonly used Yu-Gi-Oh! Terms (both official and some unofficial jargon) so you can understand what some players mean when said.
Note this list may not contain every term, but should give you a better grasp on what many terms mean.
- Attacking directly means that a monster attacks a player instead of attacking a monster. In this case, the damage to the player will be equal to the monster’s ATK. Some monsters have an effect that allows them to attack directly even if the opponent controls a monster.
- Although a card that has been used is normally sent to the Graveyard, a card which is banished is separated from the field instead. You must return your banished cards so you can use them for the next Duel.
- A monster “battles” (and is “battling”) starting from when it attacks or is attacked. This includes both monsters attacking other monsters, and monsters attacking a player’s Life Points directly. When a card requires a monster to have “battled” (past tense), the attack had to have reached the damage calculation portion of the Damage Step in order for the monster to have “battled”. If the attack stops before damage calculation, the monster did not “battle”. (Note that an attack was still declared, however, so in most cases the attacking monster cannot declare another attack.
Battle Damage/Effect Damage
- Battle damage is damage inflicted to a player by an attacking monster, or by a battle between two monsters. This is different from damage from the effect of an Effect Monster, Spell Card or Trap Card, known as "Effect Damage".
Cards on the Field
- When “cards on the field” is written in card text, it means all the cards on the Game Mat other than the Graveyard, Deck, and Extra Deck.
Colon (:) and Semicolon (;)
- Card effects are sometimes separated with a colon (:) and/or semi-colon (;). Text before the colon gives information on conditions to activate the effect, and timing on when it happens. Text before a semi-colon is what you do when the effect is activated. Text at the end of a sentence, after all colons and semi-colons, is what you do at resolution of the effect.
- Cards you “control” are the cards in your Monster Zone, Spell & Trap Zone, Field Zone, and Pendulum Zone. Cards in your “possession” include all cards you control, plus the cards in your hand, Deck, Extra Deck, Graveyard, your banished cards, cards in the middle of being Summoned to your side of the field, and Xyz Materials attached to monsters you control. If a player takes control of a card from their opponent, move it to the new controller’s side of the field. If sent to the Graveyard, or returned to the hand or Deck, it is always returned to the Graveyard / hand / Deck of the original owner.
- A card is destroyed when it is sent to the Graveyard due to battle between monsters or by an effect that destroys a card. A card that is returned from the field to the hand or Deck, or, that is sent to the Graveyard as a cost or Tribute, is NOT considered “destroyed”.
- Discard means to send a card from your hand to the Graveyard. This can happen because of a card effect or by adjusting the number of cards in your hand during the End Phase.
Effects of Cards
- The effect of a card is the special ability written on it, like the effect of a Spell, Trap, or Effect Monster. Costs that are needed to activate an ability are not part of the effect. The conditions that describe how to play a “Special Summon Monster” are also not an effect.
- In addition to Equip Spell Cards, sometimes Trap Cards or Monster Cards can become equipped to a monster. Equipped Traps remain Trap Cards, but equipped monsters are considered to be Equip Spells. The term “Equip Card” includes all 3 kinds (standard Equip Spells, equipped Traps, and monsters equipped to other monsters).If a Monster Card is equipped to another monster, it remains equipped to that monster and cannot be moved to a different target, even by card effects that would normally be able to do so. EXCEPTION: Union monsters equipped by their own effects can be moved by appropriate card effects.
- A monster that is equipped with an Equip Card is an “equipped monster”. When this monster is destroyed or flipped face-down, the equipped card loses its target, and is destroyed and sent to the Graveyard.
- When a card says to “excavate” cards from your Deck, you reveal those cards to both players. Then, before you do anything else, apply the instructions from the card effect that excavated them. Cards that are being excavated are still treated as being in the Deck until sent elsewhere by the card instructions.
- A monster is considered "Linked" when a Link Monster is pointing at it or it is being pointed at by a Link Monster's Link Markers. A monster is "Co-Linked" when two Link Monsters are pointing at each other's Link Markers.
Original ATK (or DEF)
- The Original ATK (or DEF) is the number of ATK (or DEF) points printed on the Monster Card. This does not include an increase from an Equip Spell Card or other card effect.
Pay a Cost
- To pay a cost is an action required by a player in order to activate a card, an effect, or to Summon a monster. Tributing to Tribute Summon a Level 5 monster is an example of a cost. Other common costs are discarding, paying LP, or banishing cards. You have to pay any costs before you declare the activation of the card. Even if the activation of the card is negated, you cannot get a refund of the cost that you have paid.
Piercing Battle Damage
- Some monsters can inflict piercing battle damage when they attack a Defense Position monster. This means that you inflict damage to your opponent’s LP equal to the difference between the attacking monster’s ATK and the defending monster’s DEF.
- When a card effect says to choose a card randomly, there is no official way of doing so, it is fine as long as neither player has a way of knowing which card is being chosen.
- When an effect says to reveal a card, you show it to both players. You may have to reveal a face-down card, a card from your hand, or from the top of your Deck. Revealing a card does not activate the card or its Flip effect. Normally, revealed cards are returned to their original position after being looked at by both players.
Search your Deck
- Whenever an effect instructs you to add a card from your Deck to your hand, or to Special Summon a monster from your Deck, you can pick up your Deck and search through it for the appropriate card. You must shuffle your Deck after any time you search it and let your opponent shuffle or cut. You cannot activate an effect to search your Deck for a card if there are no cards that meet the requirements in your Deck.
Send to the Graveyard
- A card can be sent to the Graveyard in various ways. Destroying a card, discarding, and Tributing a monster are all actions that send a card to the Graveyard, and will normally activate “When this card is sent to the Graveyard…” Trigger Effects. EXCEPTION: When a banished card is moved to the Graveyard, it is not considered to be “sent to the Graveyard”.
- Playing a card face-down is called a Set. For Monster Cards, playing it in face-down Defense Position is called a Set. Any card that is face-down on the field is a Set card.
- There is no rule for how to shuffle, but while shuffling you cannot look at the cards you are shuffling, or arrange the cards and then shuffle them.
- Tributing is sending a monster you control to the Graveyard. You can Tribute a face-up or face-down monster, unless otherwise specified. Tributing a monster is one possible cost for Summoning a monster or activating an effect. A monster sent to the Graveyard by Tributing is not treated as “destroyed.”
These terms have been selected from the Yu-gi-oh! Wiki
- The amount of cards one player has relative to another. Generally, the player with more cards is seen as the one with better advantage.
- A monster with high ATK relative to its Level, Rank or Link Rating (such as "Gene-Warped Warwolf")
- Affecting all of a certain element in the game. Example: Loading... is a "blanket negate" for all monsters on the field.
- Flipping a monster to face-down Defense Position.
- The entire Field.
- A card that makes a large impact on the game when played.
- The most powerful monster(s) of an archetype or Deck, either by ATK/DEF or by an effect. Usually double as the deck's win condition.For example, the boss monster of the "Cubic" archetype is Loading... . Another example is "Lightsworn" deck which has multiple bosses: Loading... or Loading... .
- A Deck's maximum potential "power" at its disposal.
- A card that serves as a component to another card(s) that either work together better than those cards individually or aid in the Deck's functions (see Combo).
- A card with no ability to impact the game.
- A card that is referred to as "any card" or a card that effectively does nothing. (Not to be confused with Dead/Brick).
- A number of cards that help a Deck achieve a certain action or helps a player draw a good card. For example, a player uses a "Windwitch" engine consisting of Loading... , Loading... , Loading... , and Loading... to Special Summon Loading... quickly.
- A related term involving bringing out a strong monster from the Deck/Extra Deck in one turn, using as few cards in the hand as possible.
- A card that can either facilitate larger plays or allows for recovery to proceed with a current play (e.g. Loading... ).
- Unnecessarily wasting resources furthering a position that would have otherwise won a game.
- A monster that generates card advantage either when it's Summoned or when it leaves the field; in the case of the latter, typically replacing itself with another card on the field (e.g. Loading... for its Summon and Loading... for if it's removed from the field.)
- A card that restricts one or both players from performing certain actions.
- A card that is used solely as a Tribute, Material or for Costs.
FTK / OTK
- First Turn Kill and One Turn Kill, respectively.
Game / Lethal
- A combination of cards and actions that result in one player winning the Duel.
- A card that is a necessary part of an engine, yet is nearly useless on its own. This term references Loading... , a common card in the Loading... & Loading... engine that is simply a 1900 ATK Normal Monster on its own.
- Usually referring to materials required to Summon monsters from the Extra Deck, as the opposite of "specific". Can also refer to such Extra Deck monsters themselves:
- Any Fusion Monster that does not list specific monsters as Fusion Material can be considered generic, even though other properties will be specified such as Type, Attribute or Ability.
- A "generic" Synchro Monster is one that simply requires "1 Tuner + 1+ non-Tuner monsters".
- A "generic" Xyz Monster is one that simply requires 2 or more monsters of the same Level.
- A "generic" Link Monster (Link 2 or higher) is one that simply requires 2 or more monsters as Link Material.
- A situation where both players are making a minimal amount of moves and neither player can pull ahead.
- Once Per turn; Limited activations.
Hard OPT / HOPT
- Only once per turn.
- A monster effect that lets itself, or another monster, gain high amounts of ATK during the Damage Step. Named after Loading... , the first monster with such an effect that was used competitively.
- Unofficial term for a type of Summon that neither requires an activation, nor starts a Chain.
- A situation in which a player has extensive field control.
- A series of action that results in the same or at least similar effect that can be used over and over again.
- A monster that Tributes itself to Special Summon another monster from the Deck. Reference to Loading... .
- Two opposing Decks using the same Archetype, strategy or theme.
Missing the timing
- The inability to activate a card/effect when it would meet its activation timing because it is not possible to activate it (stylized as When X: You can Y.)
- Loading... OR the act of using it.
- The act of copying a Deck (often those that win the YCS or placed high in a competition) from online sources.
- A monster's effect which is the same as that of a known Spell/Trap Card, and can be activated at any time without (or with few) restrictions, making it superior to the Spell/Trap Card. For example, Loading... can be considered a Loading... on legs as it shares the same effect.
OP (Overpowered) / Broken / Busted
- A card that is too powerful compared to other cards.
- Specific card(s) that can be used to effectively counter either other card(s) or specific play(s) by your opponent.
- Specific card(s) that can be used to effectively counter entire Decks or strategies (e.g. "Light-Imprisoning Mirror" against LIGHT Decks.)
- A stack of cards, usually Graveyard OR the term for a 60 card Deck.
- An action involving playing a card or cards, often a combo, e.g. "making a play".
- Any means of removing a card (usually monsters) from the field.
- Series of card Zones, with the "Front Row" referring to "Main Monster Zone" and the "Back Row" (more common) referring to "Spell & Trap Zone"
- The act of removing Spell/Traps from the field.
- A card effect that adds a card from the Deck to the hand. The term is an abbreviation for the Spell Loading... , which is arguably the first meta-relevant card to have such an effect.
- A card that serves as a player's play opener and sets the rest of their Deck in motion.
- In a Duel, how one player's resources matches up against another's and the pace in which the game is played.
- A monster card that is difficult to destroy by battle or card effect.
- A monster with a high original ATK/DEF regardless of its effects (if any) or its Level.
- A situation or combination of cards that effectively win the game even if both players still have LP OR A deck's common pattern to victory and the cards involved in it.
- A card that has no impact on the outcome of a game when you are already winning.
- An extraordinarily powerful hand usually resulting in victory.
- The act of using a monster as an Equip Card or treat it as Xyz Material, then possibly gain its power.
Beat over / Run over
- Destroy by battle
- The act of using an effect that increases ATK, DEF, or effect's affection capability.
- The act of returning a card from the field to the hand.
- To destroy a single card on the field.
- The act of using Loading... on a random Set Spell or Trap card, even if the player doesn't make a major push that turn.
- A positive effect applied to a monster OR the act of using it.
- Effect damage and the act of using it.
- Creating a Chain that would prevent Card Effects from activating in response to a specific card. For example, Loading... and Loading... are discarded to the Graveyard by Loading... . Their effects go off simultaneously, but either of them can be activated first, and the other second. When an opponent activates Loading... as a counter, only the one that would activate last would be negated.
- The act of Special Summoning a Fusion Monster from the Extra Deck through effect that states "(You do not use Loading... )"
- Spell Speed 3 OR The act of using effect that would negate.
- A monster that had been attacked, but was not destroyed, destroys the attacker after the attack OR A monster gains ATK/DEF enough to overpower an attacking monster.
- A negative effect applied to a monster OR the act of using it.
- The continual use of Floodgate and/or Counter Trap Cards.
- The act of getting cards (of any number or specification) in the GY so that those cards would be used later from the GY - usually from Deck.
Fetch / Get / Search / Tutor
- The act of looking through the Deck and adding a card of choice to your hand.
Freeze / Suppress
- Preventing a card's activation (e.g. the secondary effect of "Trickstar Light Stage".)
Lock / Bind
- The act of keeping a monster useless on the field with difficulty in removing it.
- Link Summoning Link Monsters typically in ascending order in terms of their Link Rating value. For example in "Gouki" Deck strategies during 2018, Link Summoning the Link-2 Loading... to use her effect(s) only to then use this monster treated with a Link Rating of 2 (along with another monster) in order to then Link Summon the Link-3 Loading... .
- To traditionally Special Summon a Fusion Monster, Synchro Monster, Xyz Monster or Link Monster from the Extra Deck (as in by using applicable monsters and/or appropriate card effects)
- The act of sending cards from the top of a player's deck to the Graveyard.
Mimic / Copy
- Having a card gain the property (usually Effect or ATK) of another card.
- Decreasing the number of cards in one's hand/field.
- Shuffling the player's hand cards back into your Deck and drawing new cards to replenish the shuffled cards.
- The act of destroying many or all cards on the field at once.
One of / Two of / Three of
- How many copies of a particular card is in the Deck.
Open / Open with
- A player's starting hand cards before the Draw Phase. "Open with" specifically pertains to one's initial hand to initiate combos or big plays (i.e. opening with Loading... in a "Noble Knight" Deck in order to best start this Deck's best Summoning strategy.)
Over / Get Over / Go Over
- To gain enough ATK to destroy a monster that's hard due to its high ATK/DEF.
Overlay / Stack
- The act of using Xyz Materials to Xyz Summon a monster.
- Discarding a card or sending a card from the hand to the GY.
- Increasing the number of cards in one's hand/field.
- The act of adding cards from the Graveyard to the hand or deck.
- The act of recovering cards to use them as fodder.
- The act of having a card returned to its initial state when it is placed on the field.
Reborn / Revive
- The act of Special Summoning from the GY.
- Forcing your opponent to discard a card (e.g. the effect of Loading... ) OR the specific card drawn during your Draw Phase.
- Tributes, Materials or Costs, and the act of using them.
- Pendulum Scale.
- A card effect that can protect itself from leaving the field.
Shut / Stun / Knock
- The act of Negating, whether temporary or permanently.
- The act of Summoning the same monster, usually Token or low-Level Monster with another card from time to time.
- The act of repeatedly using card effects.
- The act of placing a card on the field back into the Deck.
- The act of prolonging the game without a card effect, which will be met with penalties at tournaments.
- The act of taking your opponent's monster, or their card's property, for your own.
Suicide / Ramming / Crash
- The act of intentionally attacking knowing the attacker will be destroyed.
- The act of Summoning many monsters in a turn, regardless of battle power.
- The act of declaring an attack.
- Setting a monster face-down and then setting a face-down Spell/Trap in the same column; so-called because this set-up results in the shape of a "T".
- The act of a monster removing itself from the field and replacing itself with a different monster.
- The act of removing cards from one's Deck during a Duel to increase the chances of drawing particular cards.
- The act of intentionally or unintentionally losing a game directly by your own actions.
Lava Golem'd / Kaiju'd
- Tribute an opponent's monster to replace them with your card, usually with those specified cards.
- The act of inflicting Piercing Battle Damage.
- A set of monsters (usually in the Extra Deck) to be used for a specified situation.
Topdeck / Heart of the Cards
- The top card of the deck OR The act of placing a card on top of the deck. Can also refer to entire Decks where the sole outcome is dependent on cards that reside at the top of the Deck.
- The act of drawing a card that perfectly fits the situation, possible overturning the game state in the players favor.
- An Extra Link. Most likely named due to the shape the Extra and Main Monster Zones viewed from the turn player's field if five Link Monsters (two in the Extra Zones and three in the middle three Main Zones) form the Extra Link.
How does this work?
This section is dedicated to Frequently Asked Questions that are asked in the server or in general. This list may be updated to reflect new FAQs in the future.
This section was helped written by the Helper members of the MasterDuelMeta discord.
Q: My opponent is going first but I can't activate my Quick-Play Spell?
A: Quick-Play Spells must be set before they can be used during your opponent's turn.
A: Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring negates any effects that includes the effect to send cards from your Deck to your GY.
A: Cards with the trigger effect stating "If this card is sent to the GY by a card effect:" can only trigger if they were sent by a card effect. Since Invoked Mechaba discards it for the cost of its effect, Shaddoll Beast will not trigger. Costs are not effects.
A: When a monster is flipped face-down, it "forgets" all effects applying to it. This means that the negation applied is removed and the monster effect will resolve successfully.
A: Card effects resolve where they activate. If a negated Rescue Rabbit (by a direct negation) was activated, its negated effect still remains on the field, thus causing it to resolve negated. This is different with Loading... as Skill Drain only negates monsters that are face-up when they resolve.
A: Imperial Order works a bit differently than Skill Drain where it negates all Spell effects on the field, not just face-up. Since card effects resolve where they activate, any Spell activated on the field will be negated.
A: Costs must be paid exactly as they're written. Since Maxx "C" must be discarded to the GY, it would not be legal to activate its effect since Macro Cosmos banishes all cards sent to the GY instead.
Sources: Yu-Gi-Oh! Rule Book v10, YGOrganization, Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Website, Yugipedia