Remember when there were only Elemental HERO monsters and the HERO archetype?
It was just a simple deck that did some fusion summons but was pretty simple overall.
Well, HEROs now are made up of six different kinds of monsters:
– Elemental HEROs
– Destiny HEROs
– Masked HEROs
– Evil HEROs
– Vision HEROs
– Xtra HEROs
The idea behind the modern HERO deck is to combine the best cards from each style into a single deck.
And there are a lot of good HERO cards to choose from. In fact, there are almost too many to choose from.
So, if you don’t know where to start, take a look at our suggestions below.
18. Elemental HERO Shining Flare Wingman
Shining Flare Wingman starts with the same ATK and DEF as Yugi’s famous Dark Magician, but it gets 300 ATK for each Elemental Hero in your graveyard.
Since his synthesis takes two Hero materials, you’ll probably get at least 600 more strength, quickly sending Shining Flare’s ATK to incredible heights.
This powerful fusion monster has the warrior type that defines most of his archetype. When he kills a monster in battle and sends it to the graveyard (which is easy with his high ATK), you deal damage to your opponent’s life points equal to that monster’s original ATK.
That’s a strong burn effect on top of his strong power, but since he has no exit or graveyard effects, be sure to keep Shining Flare well-protected with other defenses.
Also, note that one of his elements (Flame Wingman) is itself a fusion monster, which can make this fusion expensive if you don’t use other tricks to change the names of your monsters. We’ll talk more about that soon.
17. Elemental HERO Solid Soldier
Even though he is on the weaker side of the Hero team, Solid Soldier has a similar effect to the general “Goblindbergh” card: when you normal summon him, you can special summon a Hero monster from your hand that is level 4 or lower.
This lets you call two units with a single summon, making it easier to do a xyz or link summon. Since there is no “once per turn” errata, you can also use the boon more than once in the same turn if you get more normal calls.
Also, Solid Soldier is a great piece for a fusion summon because any spell effect that sends it from the monster zone to the graveyard lets you special summon a Hero from your graveyard in defense position that isn’t another Solid Soldier.
This effect only happens once per turn, so don’t try to spam it with multiple copies of Soldier. However, it works well whether he dies from your fusion magic or your opponent’s spell wipe (like Raigeki or Dark Hole).
Soldier’s resurrection skills can bring back your defeated fusion behemoths, but they can also be used to make…
16. Elemental HERO Ocean
As a level 4 monster, Ocean can be standard summoned or set without a sacrifice, and it has a good 1500 ATK.
But Ocean’s main strength comes from a permanent ability: during your standby phase, you can return one Hero monster from your field or graveyard to your hand once per turn.
Sometimes it’s good to get rid of a unit (like if it’s been hurt by an opponent’s trick), but most of the time you’ll want to get cards back from the graveyard so you can use them again.
Unfortunately, this power happens during your standby phase, which is before the main phases you’ll probably summon Ocean in.
To keep it alive long enough to use its effects, you’ll need to protect it with defensive spells or traps like “Swords of Revealing Light” or “Threatening Roar.”
Lastly, keep in mind that Ocean likes the water attribute, which is useful for the fusion summon of Absolute Zero, who we’ll soon see is possibly the best Hero champion.
15. Destiny HERO – Disk Commander
Destiny HERO – Disk Commander is just a shadow of what it used to be.
You won’t believe it, but the result of this card used to be a single line of text:
“When this card is special summoned from the graveyard, draw 2 cards.”
No limits on how many times this affect can happen per turn, and no waiting around for it to happen… At the time it was made, this was easily one of the most powerful HERO cards ever made.
Since then, the card’s function has been changed in a way that makes it less useful.
If your HERO deck is like Destiny HEROs and uses the graveyard a lot, then this guy is a great addition.
But in most HERO decks, this guy is just an old piece of Yu-Gi-Oh history.
14. Masked HERO Koga
The Masked HEROs changed the way people played HERO decks and how they thought about fusion summoning in general.
Most fusion monsters need two monsters to call. After all, the whole point of fusion summoning is to combine two monsters into one, right?
To special summon a Masked HERO from the extra deck with the same trait, you only need one HERO monster and a spell card called Mask Change.
Masked HERO Koga’s quality is Light. He’s a masked HERO, and he’s really good!
It gets 500 attack for each monster your opponent controls, and you can make your opponent’s monsters weaker by sending HEROs from your graveyard to the graveyard of your opponent.
Koga is a must-have beat stick for any HERO deck, as long as you have at least one Light monster (looking at you, Destiny HEROs!).
13. Destiny HERO – Dogma
In current Yu-Gi-Oh, tribute summoning doesn’t happen very often.
So a monster that needs 3 tributes to call must be really good.
When you special summon Destiny HERO Dogma by giving up three monsters, one of which must be a Destiny HERO monster, you can cut your opponent’s life points in half during the next rest phase.
You should bring this guy out as soon as possible in the game.
If your opponent hasn’t taken any damage yet, this action alone will take away 4000 LP from them.
When you add that to this card’s amazing 3400 attack, you have a pretty fast way to kill your opponent, assuming you can get him on the field.
12. Xtra HERO Infernal Devicer
Even though HEROs is a fusion-focused deck, that doesn’t mean they haven’t tried Link summoning.
This particular Link 2 monster makes fusion summoning very easy, and here’s how:
You can reveal a HERO fusion monster in your extra deck and add two of the needed materials from your deck to your hand. However, you can’t summon non-HERO monsters the turn you use this effect.
This effect is great for summoning niche HERO fusions that require two specific HEROs (like Elemental HERO Mudballman) without having to wait around to draw them.
11. Contrast HERO Chaos
Contrast HERO Chaos is, in terms of appearance, one of the coolest HERO monsters I’ve ever seen.
Two different Masked HERO monsters were put together to make this guy. Even though that seems like a lot, it’s well worth it.
It can do the following:
You can use this card to cancel the effects of any face-up card on the field once per turn and quickly. This will last until the end of the turn.
This effect not only helps you deal with enemy effects that make it hard to move, but it’s also great for dealing with field spells.
Field spells are an important part of most modern Yu-Gi-Oh decks, so being able to get rid of them every turn can give you a big advantage.
10. Elemental HERO Shadow Mist
One thing that makes Masked HEROs so strong is that they always do the same thing.
And it’s because of cards like Elemental HERO Shadow Mist.
When this card is called normally, you can look through your deck for Mask Change and add it to your hand. This lets you play a Masked HERO from your extra deck right away.
And when Shadow Mist is sent to the graveyard, you can look through your deck and add any HERO monster to your hand.
The best way to play this is to find Mask Change, set it, and then use it to target Elemental HERO Shadow Mist during your opponent’s turn. Then, take a Masked HERO Dark Law from your extra deck and search your deck for a HERO.
It’s hard to pull off, but if you can, there are a lot of good things that can happen.
9. Vision HERO Vyon
You can find a copy of this guy in almost every HERO deck.
It’s one of the best search cards ever made, and it almost makes fusion calls too easy.
How it works is as follows:
You can send any HERO monster from your deck to the graveyard when it is called out by a regular or special summon.
Destiny HEROs have many different affects that happen when they are in the graveyard, and Vision HERO Vyon can set them all up.
Then, you can send a HERO monster from your graveyard back to your deck to find another copy of Polymerization and put it in your hand.
No longer do you have to wait to draw a Poly to fuse with.
Because if you have cards like this in your HERO deck, you’ll fusion summon a lot more often.
8. Elemental HERO Escuridao
Dark monsters don’t come up very often for elemental HEROs.
But when they do, they can do a lot of damage.
The Elemental HERO Escuridao gets 100 attack for each Elemental HERO monster in your deck.
If you’re playing a pure Elemental HERO deck (it worked for Jaden Yuki, who was one of the best players of his time!) Then, this card’s attack value can be really high.
7. Destiny HERO – Malicious
Yu-Gi-Oh has a semi-limited list because of Destiny HERO Malicious.
You can send this guy to the graveyard to special summon another Destiny HERO – Malicious from your deck.
This action doesn’t happen even a little bit once per turn.
So, you can take advantage of it a lot when you have 3 copies, but you can’t use it at all when you only have 1. This is why this card is semi-limited.
Destiny HERO – Malicious is a great addition to any kind of HERO deck you play.
If you put one copy in your graveyard, you can always call another one from your deck. This gives you everything you need to start fusing strong HEROs, which you will need to win the game.
6. Elemental HERO Absolute Zero
Most of the “brutal” HERO cards are in Destiny HEROs and Evil HEROs. I mean, it’s Yu-Gi-Oh theory at this point that evil cards do powerful things.
Because of this, Elemental HERO Absolute Zero is such a great card in this strategy.
What it does is:
When this card leaves the field, you can get rid of every card your opponent has.
It doesn’t matter how this card leaves the field. Your opponent can destroy it in battle or with a card effect, or you can send it to the graveyard and use it to call one of your own monsters or do something else to get rid of it.
In either case, your opponent will lose every card they are holding, and the game could be all but yours.
5. Elemental HERO Honest Neos
One of the best parts of Yu-Gi-Oh is being able to surprise your opponent with battle traps like Honest. That’s why I’m so glad this archetype has its own version, and it’s really a better version.
This guy is honest in two different ways.
First, you can throw it away from your hand to give any HERO monster you control 2500 attack until the end of the turn.
This action happens quickly, so if you play this card during the damage step, your opponent will take a lot of damage (and won’t even know it).
Second, while this guy is on the field, you can use as Honest any HERO card in your hand.
So, you can throw away a HERO from your hand to give this card the same attack as the monster you just threw away, making this guy almost impossible to stop in battle.
4. Xtra HERO Dread Decimator
Xtra HERO Dread Decimator is the other important link monster in this deck.
All of his arrows point down, which is very useful because it means you don’t give your opponent any extra linked zones to Link summon into.
This guy gets 100 attack for each HERO monster in your deck, just like every other HERO monster.
Since HEROs is a deck that fusion summons a lot, your graveyard is going to be full of HEROs. This means that the attack numbers of your HEROs are about to get a big boost.
But that’s not all:
Your opponent also takes pierce battle damage from the Xtra HERO Dread Decimator. So even in defense mode, they aren’t completely safe.
3. Elemental HERO Stratos
I can’t believe that this card is now legal again.
Stratos was taken off the market for a long time, and it’s easy to see why.
This guy is without a doubt the best searcher in HEROs.
You have a choice when you call him normally or with a special spell:
You can either remove as many spells and traps as HERO monsters you control, or you can search your deck for any HERO monster and add it to your hand.
Stratos is crazy because neither of these effects only happen once per turn. If you can keep special calling Stratos back to your side of the field, you can search more than one HERO from your deck. This makes Stratos a great way to keep your combos going.
2. Evil HERO Malicious Bane
Evil HEROs is a trope that doesn’t come up very often.
Which is a shame because they have some really cool cards.
This guy is a very powerful board-clearer that you can use every turn. What it does is:
You can get rid of all monsters your opponent controls that have attack that is less than or equal to this card. For each card killed by this effect, this card gains 200 attack.
Not only does this constant attack boost let you kill more monsters every turn, but this guy can’t be killed by battle or card effects at all.
To get rid of this guy, your opponent will have to use a removal spell that doesn’t destroy anything, which isn’t easy to find…
The only bad thing about this card is that he needs an Evil HERO monster and the “Dark Fusion” spell card.
And it can be hard to get both of those into your hand, even with the best HERO teams.
1. Masked HERO Dark Law
In Yu-Gi-Oh, floodgates have always been very strong tools.
If you can stop your opponent from using certain methods, you can stop them from using their deck at all.
Masked HERO Dark Law is one of the best floodgates Yu-Gi-Oh has ever seen because it gets rid of every card that would have been sent to the trash.
This makes it impossible for your opponent to use any plan that involves their graveyard. They can’t put monsters there to revive them later or send monsters there to use effects from the graveyard. This kind of restriction can totally kill decks like Shaddolls or Zombies.
And when it comes to effects that make you have to get rid of a card, this is a good one to have in your HERO deck.
But as if Masked HERO Dark Law wasn’t broken enough, we get even more:
You can get rid of a random card from your opponent’s hand once per turn when they add a card from their deck to their hand (but not during the normal draw process).
The whole point of modern Yu-Gi-Oh is to find your combo pieces. So if your opponent does that, punishing them for it is a guaranteed way to mess up their plan.