From Academic Kids

Missing image
Yu-Gi-Oh! manga volume 1 (English version)

Yu-Gi-Oh! (遊☆戯☆王 Yūgiō, Japanese for "King of Games"Template:Ref is a popular Japanese anime and manga franchise from Kazuki Takahashi that mainly involves characters who play a card game called Duel Monsters (originally called Magic & Wizards in the manga. See the section "Card game" below for different names of the game) wherein each player purchases and assembles a deck of Monster, Magic and Trap Cards in order to defeat one another.

Begun as a manga in Japan in 1996, the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise has since grown to an immensely successful global brand, spawning various manga and anime series, a real-life version of the card game featured in the story, video games, toys, and many other products.



The Yu-Gi-Oh! universe consists of two manga series, three anime series, and two movies.

Japanese manga

Yu-Gi-Oh! (original manga)

Run from 1996 to March 8, 2004, the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga created by Kazuki Takahashi was one of the most popular titles featured in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump. The manga originally focused on Yugi Mutou as he uses games designed by himself to fight various villains, and goes into several misadventures with his friends Katsuya Jonouchi, Anzu Mazaki, and Hiroto Honda. The plots start out as fairly episodic and there are only three instances of Magic and Wizards in the first seven volumes. Starting around the eighth volume, the Duelist Kingdom arc starts and the plot shifts to a Duel Monsters-centered universe.

Yu-Gi-Oh! R

Main article: Yu-Gi-Oh! R

Illustrated by Akira Itou, one of the artist who illustrated the original Yu-Gi-Oh! manga, and supervised by Takahashi, Yu-Gi-Oh! R (遊☆戯☆王R) is a spin-off of the original Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise, with most of the same characters in a new plotline, which takes place between the Battle City arc and the Egypt arc. The manga was first published in Shueisha's monthly magazine V-Jump on April 21, 2004.

Although there is no explicit explanation on the meaning of "R" in the title, the letter probably stands for "Reverse"Template:Ref.

Japanese anime

Yu-Gi-Oh! (first series anime)

Main article: Yu-Gi-Oh! (first series anime)

Produced by Toei Animation, this 27-episode anime is based on Yu-Gi-Oh! manga volumes 1-7, which do not focus much on Magic & Wizards. It is not connected in any way to Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters, another Yu-Gi-Oh! anime series made by Nihon Ad Systems (NAS), but is often referred to as the "first series" to distinguish it from the latter. First aired on TV Asahi on April 4, 1998, the series ended its run on October 10, 1998.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters (second series anime)

Main article: Yu-Gi-Oh! (second series anime)

Often referred to as simply "Yu-Gi-Oh!" or the "second series" of the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime, Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters (遊戯王デュエルモンスターズ) is the series that introduced Yu-Gi-Oh! to the Western world. Produced by NAS, it was first aired on TV Tokyo on April 18, 2000, and later translated into more than 20 languages and airs in more than 60 countries. Mainly based on Yu-Gi-Oh! manga volume 8 and onward, the series ended its 224-episode run in Japan on September 29, 2004.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters GX

Main article: Yu-Gi-Oh! GX

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters GX (遊戯王デュエルモンスターズGX), often known as "Yu-Gi-Oh! GX", is an anime spin-off of the original Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise, with a new protagonist, Judai Yuki, and a new plotline that is not based on the original manga (the "GX" in the title stands for "Generation neXt"). The series mainly focuses on the life in a duelist academy known as Duel Academia. Also produced by NAS, it was first aired on TV Tokyo on October 6, 2004.

English adaptations

English anime

Missing image
The English Yu-Gi-Oh! logo

See also: Yu-Gi-Oh! (second series anime)

On May 8, 2001, 4Kids Entertainment obtained the U.S. merchandising and television rights to Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters from Konami. They partnered up with Warner Bros. and released their dubbed version of the anime on Kids' WB! on September 29, 2001, under the title Yu-Gi-Oh!.

The English Yu-Gi-Oh! anime is divided into a number of seasons. So far, four seasons have been released:

Starting from Season 3, a subtitle was added to the series title. So Season 3 is known as Yu-Gi-Oh! Enter the Shadow Realm, while Season 4 is known as Yu-Gi-Oh! Waking the Dragons.

The English Yu-Gi-Oh! anime is broadcast on many channels. In the United States it is broadcast on Kids' WB! and on Cartoon Network; in Canada, it is broadcast on YTV; while in the United Kingdom and Australia, it is broadcast on Nickelodeon. Like many anime originally created for the Japanese market, a number of changes (including the names of most of the characters) were made when the English Yu-Gi-Oh! anime was released.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters GX has been licensed by 4Kids and is set to premiere on Cartoon Network and Kids' WB! in September 2005 under the title Yu-Gi-Oh! GX.

On October 19, 2004, 4Kids, in association with FUNimation, released uncut Yu-Gi-Oh! DVDs after years of petitions from Yu-Gi-Oh! fans. These DVDs include the original, unedited Japanese animations and Japanese dialogue tracks with English subtitles, as well as all-new English dubs with translations closer to the original dialogues. Both language tracks use the original Japanese music. Each DVD contains three episodes.

4Kids has not translated the 27 episodes produced by Toei that make up the first series Yu-Gi-Oh! anime. Some people mistake Toei's series for a lost first season of the TV show, and refer to it as "Season (or Series) 0".

English manga

Missing image
The Yu-Gi-Oh! Millennnium World logo

The English version of the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga is released by VIZ Media in both the Shonen Jump magazine and in individual graphic novels. The original Japanese character names are kept for most of the characters (Yugi, Jonouchi, Anzu, and Honda, for instance), while the English names are used for a few characters (e.g. Maximillion Pegasus) and the Duel Monsters cards. Published in its original right-to-left format, the manga is largely unedited, especially compared to the English anime.

Viz released volumes 1 through 7 of the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga under its original title. The Duelist Kingdom and Battle City arcs is released as Yu-Gi-Oh! Duelist, while the Egypt arc is released as Yu-Gi-Oh! Millennium World. As of June 2005, the Egypt arc can be found in Shonen Jump.

The translator of the English manga is Anita Sengupta.


Yu-Gi-Oh! (first Yu-Gi-Oh! movie)

Known as simply "Yu-Gi-Oh!", this first movie of Yu-Gi-Oh! has been released only in Japan. A 30-minute movie produced by Toei Animation, it was first shown in theaters on March 6, 1999. Its characters are from the first series Yu-Gi-Oh! anime.

The movie is about a boy named Shougo Aoyama who is too timid to duel even after he got a powerful rare card, the legendary Red-Eyes Black Dragon, in his Deck. Yugi tries to bring Shougo's courage out in a duel with Seto Kaiba, who has his eyes on Shougo's rare card.

Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Pyramid of Light

Main article: Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Pyramid of Light

The second movie, often referred to as simply "Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie", was first released in North America on August 13, 2004. The movie was developed specifically for Western audiences based on the overwheiming success of the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise in the U.S. Its characters are from the second series Yu-Gi-Oh! anime. In the movie, Yugi faces Anubis, his arch-rival from his time.

The unedited Japanese remade version of the movie premiered in special screenings in Japan on November 3, 2004 and normal theaters on Christmas Eve, 2004, under the title Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters: Pyramid of Light (遊戯王デュエルモンスターズ 光のピラミッド). The movie was then aired on TV Tokyo on January 2, 2005.

People who attended the movie during its premiere (U.S. or Japan) got free Yu-Gi-Oh! cards.


Missing image
Dark Yugi (Yami Yugi), the alter ego of Yugi Mutou

Main articles:

See also:

The main characters of Yu-Gi-Oh! (all anime, manga and movies except Yu-Gi-Oh! GX) are Yugi Mutou (Yugi Moto in the English anime), a shy, pure-hearted high school student and gaming expert who possesses an ancient Egyptian relic called the Millennium Puzzle; and the Nameless Pharaoh, otherwise known as Dark Yugi (Yami Yugi), a darker personality hold in the Puzzle. Yugi's best friends Katsuya Jonouchi (Joey Wheeler), Anzu Mazaki (Téa Gardner), and Hiroto Honda (Tristan Taylor) are also primary characters, as well as Dark Yugi's main rival, Seto Kaiba.

Yugi's three best friends: (from left to right)  (Téa),  (Tristan),  (Joey)
Yugi's three best friends: (from left to right) Anzu (Téa), Honda (Tristan), Jonouchi (Joey)

The main character of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX is Judai Yuki, an energetic boy who possesses great talents in Duel Monsters.

The Duel Monsters themselves, as the primary battle agents in the series' card duels, can also be considered major characters, especially the three God Cards: Obelisk the Tormentor or The God of the Obelisk ("Giant God Soldier of Obelisk" in the Japanese version), The Winged Dragon of Ra or The Sun Dragon Ra (Winged God Dragon of Ra), and Slifer the Sky Dragon (Heaven Dragon of Osiris).

Central plots

Yu-Gi-Oh! (all anime, manga and movies except Yu-Gi-Oh! GX) tells the tale of Yugi Mutou, a shorter-than-normal high school student who was given an ancient Egyptian artifact known as the Millennium Puzzle in pieces by his grandfather. Upon completing the Puzzle, he is infused with another personality which is later discovered to be the spirit of a 3000-year-old (or, in the English anime, 5000-year-old) pharaoh, who forgets everything from his time. As the story goes on, the two of them, together with Yugi's friends, Anzu Mazaki, Katsuya Jonouchi, Hiroto Honda, etc., will discover the secrets of the Millennium Puzzle, together with its relation to the Pharaoh's lost memories, and to the card game Magic & Wizards/Duel Monsters.

Yu-Gi-Oh! GX follows the story of Judai Yuki, a young talented duelist who is given the card "Winged Kuriboh" by Yugi before Judai's admission to Duel Academia, a boarding school established by Seto Kaiba which carries out elitism. Judai, who scores low marks in his admission tests, is placed in the Slifer Red dorm, one that is for students with the lowest grades. The story goes on as Judai faces challenges from different students in Duel Academia, and later finds himself entangled in a conflict related to the hidden secrets of the academy.


Media and release information

Original games

There are sereval games in the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime and manga that were originally created as fictitious games for the series and was later turned into real games or video games.

Card game

The Yu-Gi-Oh! anime and manga series introduces an original card game created by Takahashi. Different names can be used to refer to the game depending on where you see it:


Designed by Kazuki Takahashi, Magic & Wizards (M&W) is based on Magic: The Gathering (Magic), a popular card game worldwide. Compared with its predecessor, M&W was very simple when it was first introduced in the manga: there were only two types of cards (Monster & Magic Cards); the result of a monster battle only relied on the Attack and Defense Points of the monsters and the effects of Magic Cards (which only appeared occasionally). According to the author, the game was designed as such because he felt that the rules of Magic was complicated, and he wanted to create something similar but simplierTemplate:Ref.

The original plan of Takahashi was to phase out M&W, which took him only one nightTemplate:Ref to design it, in just two episodes. After the first appearance of the game in the manga (in Volume 2, Duel 8), the reader response on it was enormousTemplate:Ref, and Shonen Jump started getting calls from all these readers who wanted to know more about the game. Takahashi realized that he had hit on something, so he modified the storyline to feature more of the card game. And with the advance of the manga, the game continues to evolve, becoming more complicated.

The real game

Magic & Wizards has been brought to life in three versions, by two different companies. The first version, known as the Carddas version, was first released by Bandai in September 1998. Only three boosters had been released for this version before the license of the card game was sold to Konami later. The game was popular, although it used a simplified and modified versionTemplate:Ref of the gaming rule used in the manga, and is less faithful to the manga compared with Konami's versions of the game.

The second version of the Yu-Gi-Oh! cards was released by Konami on December 16, 1998, included as special pack-in cards in the first Yu-Gi-Oh! video game, Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Template:Ref. These cards are not to be mixed up with those of Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG released later by the same company. The two versions are different in terms of design, with the looks of the former closer to those in the manga, to an extent that their effect texts are all directly quoted from the manga. Only 10 cards were released for this version, and Konami didn't have any gaming rules for these cards, as they were intended for collection purpose only. They cannot be used in the later-released Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG.

The third version, Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG, was first released on February 4, 1999, by Konami. The gaming rule of this version is much more sophisticated and mature compared with the Carddas version, while at the same time does a much better job in preserving the style and feeling of M&W. Succeeding the popular Carddas version, Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG was an instant hit. And on March 1, 2002, the English version of the game was brought to the U.S. by Upper Deck Entertainment under the new name, Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game, with the release of its first set, Legend of Blue-Eyes White Dragon. Later on in the same year (March 19), Konami released its first Yu-Gi-Oh! videogame in the U.S. for Gameboy Color, known as Yu-Gi-Oh! Dark Duel Stories.

Currently, Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG/TCG have been released in more than 40 countries.

Other games

Apart from Magic & Wizards, there are also other games that were originally created as fictitious games for Yu-Gi-Oh! manga and was later turned tinto video games, the most famous ones being:

  • Capsule Monster Chess (Capmon) — a sort of pre-Mage Knight collectible miniatures game. Video game: Capsule Monster Coliseum (http://www.konami.com/gs/capsulemonster/)
  • Monster World — a role-playing chess game. Video game: Monster Capsule GB (http://www.konami.jp/gs/game/yugioh_mc/) (avaliable in Japanese only)
  • Dungeon Dice Monsters (DDM), known in the Japanese manga as Dragon Dice & Dungeon (DDD) — a dungeon crawl boardgame where the tiles are created by unfolding the faces of 6-sided dice. Video game: Dungeon Dice Monsters (http://www.konami.com/gs/dungeondice/).

Among the three, only Dungeon Dice Monsters have been released as a real collectible game, but the game wasn't popular, and currently no more new figures are released. On March 29, 2003, Mattel released the English version of the first booster of Dungeon Dice Monsters in America, under the title DragonFlame. But so far, only three of the seven boosters in Japanese version have been released, with the last one released in June 2003.


Upon its airing in the U.S. in 2001, the English version of Yu-Gi-Oh! instantly became the number 1 Saturday morning show for kids on network television, and has consistently maintained its lead with strong ratings among boys, leading Kids' WB! to expand the show to six days a week beginning April 1, 2002. The October 27, 2001 issue of TV Guide named Yu-Gi-Oh! one of this season's top 10 best new kids' shows.

The merchandising of Yu-Gi-Oh!-related products and games has drawn criticism from adults and anime fans, and the series is widely described as toyetic. These criticisms usually come from people who have not seen the first seven volumes of the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga.

Yu-Gi-Oh!-related books (not including manga)

Several books based on the manga and anime have been released in Japan and outside of Japan.

Released in English

Not released in English

All books are published by Shueisha and credit Kazuki Takahashi as the author.

  • Yu-Gi-Oh! (novel) - ISBN 4-08-703086-5 - This is a novelization of the first two story arcs of the manga.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game Duel Monsters Official Rule Guide -- The Thousand Rule Bible - ISBN 4-08-782134-X - This is a rule book and strategy guide for the Junior and Shin Expert rules. This also has a Q & A related to certain cards, and the book comes with the "multiply" card.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game Duel Monsters Official Card Catalog The Variable Book - This is a collection of card catalogues.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Character Guide Book - The Gospel of Truth (遊戯王キャラクターズガイドブック―真理の福音― Yūgiō Kyarakutāzu Gaido Bukku Shinri no Fukuin) - ISBN 4-08-873363-0 - This book is a character guide related to the manga.

Yu-Gi-Oh!-related video games

All Yu-Gi-Oh!-related video games are produced by Konami. The English version video games generally use the 4Kids English anime names, as opposed to the Viz English manga names. The newest game in each particular plaform is list first, follow by the second newest, etc. The Japanese version of the game, if any, is stated in the bracket. Each game generaly includes a few promotional cards (usually 3) for use with the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG.

Released in English

Game Boy Advance

Game Boy Color


Nintendo DS



PlayStation 2


Not released in English

Game Boy

  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters (no official website avaliable)

Game Boy Advance

Game Boy Color


  1. Template:Note Yūgi (遊戯) means "game"; Ō (王) means "king".
  2. Template:Note In volume 1 of the Yu-Gi-Oh! R manga, Akira Itou explains the manga, which describes a hidden story that does not appear in the original Yu-Gi-Oh! manga, as a "reverse" (リバース) of the original one, in an effort to expand the Yu-Gi-Oh! world.


  1. Template:Note Words from the Millennium Puzzle Game (http://web.archive.org/web/20040605083204/jump.shueisha.co.jp/yugi/game.html) (A Japanese site. Click "CLICK HERE", then click "ゲームスタート" and complete the puzzle to see words from the author concerning M&W (or see it in the ducussion page). Macromedia Shockwave is required to play the game.
  2. Template:Note Kazuki Takahashi (2003). Yu-Gi-Oh! (遊☆戯☆王) Volume 30. Shueisha.
  3. Template:Note Lisa Takeuchi Cullen (June 4, 2001). 'I've Always Been Obessed With Games'  (http://www.time.com/time/interactive/multimedia/takahashi_int/content.html). Time Magazine.
  4. Template:Note DOP (September 25, 2002). Yu-Gi-Oh! Carddas version (http://www.geocities.co.jp/Playtown-Bingo/5875/tcg/tkn02ycd.html) (A Japanese page)
  5. Template:Note Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game Duel Monsters Master Guide (遊戯王オフィシャルカードゲームデュエルモンスタース MASTER GUIDE), p. 64. Shueisha. ISBN 4-08-782134-X
  6. Akira Itou (2005). Yu-Gi-Oh! R (遊☆戯☆王R) Volume 1. Shueisha.

External links


Official sites

Information sites

Fan sites

  • False Memories - Yu-Gi-Oh! Information and Base Site (http://www.false-memories.com/) - features information of every aspect of the manga, anime, and games. A large area of fandom and multimedia for fans around the world.
  • Janime - Yu-Gi-Oh! Anime/Manga World (http://www.janime.net/) - up-to-date information on Yu-Gi-Oh! (except the card game), manga scans in English and Japanese, screenshots, various movie clips and song clips, anime and manga episode summaries, character's deck lists, etc.
  • Yu-Jyo - A Yu-Gi-Oh! Episode Guide (http://www.ratandfox.net/YuGiOh/) - features TV episode synopsis, with a focus on the differences between the American and Japanese versions
  • Yugioh Realms page (http://www.yugiohrealms.com) - Yu-Gi-Oh! Realms, a site of Realmworx.
  • Pojo Yu-Gi-Oh! page (http://www.pojo.com/yu-gi-oh/index.shtml) - Pojo's Yu-Gi-Oh! page.
  • Duel Yugioh (http://www.duelyugioh.com/) - A fan site.



Template:Yu-Gi-Oh! Directoryde:Yu-Gi-Oh! es:Yu-Gi-Oh! fr:Yu-Gi-Oh! he:יוגי-הו it:Yu-Gi-Oh! ja:遊☆戯☆王 nl:Yu-Gi-Oh! zh:遊戲王


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