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Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel best cards: what are the best staple cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel?

Find the best cards for every deck in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel

What are the best staple cards all players should own in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel? While every deck has its own specific strategies you need to use in order to win, there are a number of cards that can be used in almost every deck that are crucial for victory. The best staple cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel are cards that are designed to counter your opponent’s strategies, assisting you in building a powerful board in order to win.

Below, we want to introduce you to the cards that you should prioritize adding to your in-game collection, whether through crafting or buying booster packs.

Cover image for YouTube videoYu-Gi-Oh! MASTER DUEL – launch trailer – 19.01.2022

For those unaware, a staple card in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel is a card that’s generically powerful and can be used within almost any deck in order to access your most important cards faster or interrupt your opponent's play. This makes these the best cards that can help you turn defeat into victory as you rise up the rankings in ranked duels.

Now let's go over some of the very best staple cards to add to your collection.

What are the best staple spell cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel?

Many of the best staple spell cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel are quick-play spell cards that can be activated in either player’s turn (the card must be set on the field in order to activate during your opponent’s turn) to counter their monster effects, spells and trap cards.

Forbidden Chalice is a quick-play spell that can negate the monster effect of any face-up monster on the field until the end of the turn, but that monster gains 400 attack. Giving your opponent’s monster 400 attack is a small price for negating their effect and stopping them from summoning something more powerful and difficult to counter.

Forbidden Droplet allows you to send cards from your hand to the graveyard in order to negate the effects and halve the attacks of monsters currently on the field equal to the amount sent to the graveyard. Since your opponent can’t negate the card’s activation with cards of the same type as those discarded (monster, spell, trap) it can stop an opponent from developing their board. Unlike Lance, Droplet is limited to once per turn.

Forbidden Lance

Called By The Grave targets a monster in your opponent’s graveyard, then negates the effects until the end of the next turn and banishes it. This also prevents your opponent from activating the effect of a second card they own. Twin Twisters allows the user to discard one card in order to destroy up to two spell and trap cards on the field. While it won’t negate them, it can help counter pesky continuous trap cards like Skill Drain. Depending on your deck, discarding a particular card may also allow you to activate that card’s effect and kickstart a combo of your own.

Pot of Greed may be banned, but there are a number of other cards that allow you to draw cards from the deck. If you don’t rely heavily on the Extra Deck, Pot of Desires allows you to excavate the top 3-6 cards from their deck by banishing that many cards from the Extra Deck, add one card to your hands, and return the others to the bottom in any order. Do bear in mind that damage to your opponent’s life points is halved for the rest of the turn this card is activated.

Pot of Extravagance requires you to banish cards from your Extra Deck (up to six), then draw one card for every three cards banished. Pot of Desires requires you to banish 10 cards from your deck to draw two cards, while Pot of Avarice allows players to shuffle five monsters from the graveyard into the deck to draw two cards. Upstart Goblin is another card that allows you to draw one card, then your opponent gains 1000 life points.

One-sided card removal like Raigeki (destroy all monsters your opponent controls) and Harpie’s Feather Duster (destroy all spell and trap cards your opponent controls) can quickly clear your opponent’s field, but two more spell cards worth considering are Crossout Designator and Lightning Storm.

Crossout Designator counters hand traps your opponent may use, as it allows you to declare a card name and banish that card from your deck in order to negate the activated effect until the end of the turn. In the current meta many players use the same hand traps like Maxx “C”, making this a way to negate its activation. Lightning Storm is great if you draw it in your opening hand after going second, as provided you control no face-up cards, you can either destroy all Attack Position cards or Spells and Traps your opponent controls.

Skill Drain

What are the best staple trap cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel?

The best staple trap cards in the current Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel meta are trap cards that negate your opponent’s cards and effects in order to slow down their deck.

Imperial Order, a card so powerful it is featured on the in-game limited and forbidden list at one copy per deck, is a continuous trap card that can negate all spell effects on the field. For a cost of just 700 life points in your standby phase, this can almost entirely stop many decks that rely on these cards. Remember to only use this if you yourself don’t need spell cards to pull off certain combos.

Skill Drain can effectively counter many of the most popular decks like Zoodiac and Tri-Brigade. By paying 1000 life points, the effects of all face-up monsters on the field are negated while they remain face-up on the field (but their effects can still be activated). If you don’t rely on effects activated in these conditions, running this at three can help counter many of the most popular decks currently being played online.

Infinite Impermanence is a versatile effect negation trap card. This card can target one face-up monster your opponent controls and negate its effects until the end of the turn. If you control no cards, it can be activated from the hand, making it useful when going second and the card is in your opening hand. Plus, if you do activate it from the field successfully, all spell and trap cards in the same column are negated till the end of the turn.

Additional cards worth considering are Heavy Storm Duster (target up to two spell and trap cards on the field and destroy them, but you can’t conduct your battle phase in the turn this card was activated), Solemn Judgement, Solemn Warning and Solemn Strike (each offer negation for the cost of life points), as well as the continuous trap cards Gozen Match and Rivalry of Warlords (which each force players to control either one attribute or type of monster, sending all others to the graveyard).

Maxx C

What are the best staple hand traps in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel?

Hand traps refer to cards that can be activated from the hand in response to an opponent’s action. The best staple hand traps in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel can both benefit your own deck and punish your opponent.

The best staple hand trap in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel is Maxx “C”, thanks to its potential to both stop your opponent and potentially allow you to draw many cards at once. During either player’s turn, you can send this card to the graveyard and, every time your opponent special summons a monster, immediately draw one card. From here your opponent either needs to end their turn to prevent you from drawing, or continue, allowing you to draw many cards that could benefit you on your next turn.

The next-best hand trap serves as a convenient counter to Maxx “C” and a number of other popular cards used in decks like Zoodiac: Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring. This card can be discarded at any time to negate any effect anywhere that either adds a card from the deck to the hand, special summon from the deck, or sends a card from the deck to the graveyard. You can easily obtain one copy for 750 Gems with 10 free packs of Master Pack from the in-game store, although I would recommend running two or three copies in your deck if possible.

With many of the most popular meta decks in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel reliant on multiple special summons, Nibiru, The Primal Being can be an influential hand trap. During the Main Phase, if your opponent normal or special summoned 5 or more monsters this turn, you can tribute face-up monsters on both sides of the field to special summon this card, then special summon a Primal Being Token on your opponents field with attack and defense equal to the monster’s tributed. Provided you can overcome this token, this is an effective way to summon a 3000 attack monster for minimal cost while removing monsters your opponent controls.

Knightmare Unicorn

What are the best staple Extra Deck monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel?

The Extra Deck is crucial to victory in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel, and the best staple Extra Deck monsters are cards with powerful effects that can be used in almost any deck.

Knightmare Phoenix and Knightmare Unicorn are Link 2 and Link 3 Link Monsters that can be summoned by any deck provided they are summoned using monsters of different names (2 monsters for Phoenix, 2+ for Unicorn). Each have special effects when summoned, with Phoenix allowing you to discard one card to destroy one spell or trap card your opponent controls while Unicorn can shuffle one card back into the deck.

Borreload Dragon is a Link 4 monster that can’t be targeted by monster effects. You can target one face-up monster on the field once per turn that loses 500 defense and attack, with your opponent unable to activate cards or effects in response to the activation of this effect. At the start of the Damage Step if this card attacks an opponent’s monster, you can take control of that monster and place it in a zone this card points to. This card is sent to the graveyard during the end phase, but you could potentially win the duel before that happens.

Borreload Savage Dragon is a synchro monster that is powerful if summoned to the field correctly. You can equip one Link Monster from the graveyard to this card if it was Synchro Summoned, then place Borreload Counters equal to that card’s Link Rating onto this card. Not only does this monster gain attack equal to half the attached Link Monster, once per turn, you can remove a Borrel Counter to negate the activation of a card or effect.

Accesscode Talker is a Link 4 monster that, if Link Summoned, can target 1 Link Monster that was used as material to summon it and gain attack equal to that monster’s Link rating x1000. It also can destroy one card your opponent controls by banishing one Link Monster from your field or graveyard, and while you can’t banish monsters with the same attribute in the same turn, this effect isn’t limited to once per turn. Your opponent also can’t activate cards or effects in response to any of these effects, making it a hard-to-remove boss monster.

Divine Arsenal AA-Zeus - Sky Thunder

There are certain XYZ Monsters worth considering as well. If your deck includes a number of Level 4 Monsters, Abyss Dweller can counter many current meta decks through its effect to detach 1 material to prevent your opponent from activating any card effects in their graveyard.

Divine Arsenal AA-Zeus - Sky Thunder, beyond having a cool name, can be easily summoned by using any XYZ monster as material provided it battled this turn. Sky Thunder has a quick effect that allows it to detach two materials in order to send all other cards to the graveyard. It can also attach any card from your hand, deck or extra deck as material if another card you control is destroyed by battle or card effect. At 3000 attack, this is difficult to defeat if summoned.

That’s everything you need to know about the best staple cards in Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel. Using these cards is the best way to counter your oppenent's strategies and win more matches online. To play online you also need a deck, so you may want to check out these guides on the best Yu-Gi-Oh Master Duel structure decks and starter decks in order to get you started.

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Alicia Haddick


Alicia Haddick is a writer based in Japan with a specialty in covering the Japanese industry. They’ve been freelancing since 2021 and writing about games, movies, anime and more since 2018.