Yu-Gi-Oh! – Repair & Overhaul

Reconstructing Yugioh – From the ground up

A few days ago, I posted a discussion on reddit, asking people to list ways in which yugioh could be improved. I didn’t name any personal issues I had with the game; I didn’t even suggest any specific problems or complaints that I felt people should talk about. Instead, it was left as a complete open discussion. Within one day, this post blew up, receiving over 2.6k views and 95 comments.
Clearly, a lot of people have some constructive criticisms concerning their favorite game.


But what is the purpose of this experiment?
Just to complain, and to create even more hate withing the community?
Not at all. The complete opposite, in fact.


The goal of this Poll was to find out, specifically, everything about yugioh that could be improved. I spent a couple hours reading every single comment, and compiling them into a list: I found that the majority of complaints can be described by one of seven statements. Remember, none of these are my direct opinions: All statistics covered in this article is entirely from the sample of Reddit users.


Main Issues with Yugioh

  • Lack of communication from Konami

    • Konami doesn’t have a Q&A section.
    • Konami doesn’t release information on why cards are on the banlist.
    • Konami doesn’t provide information concerning ruling debates.
    • Konami doesn’t release dates for upcoming banlist.


  • Meta Decks are too expensive; Too many good cards are Secret Rare

    • Competitive decks cost upwards of $800.
    • An average board game costs around $30.
    • There is little to no valuable prize support.
    • When cards are hit on the banlist, they often become worthless.



  • Game is over too quickly, and Turns take too long

    • Floodgate cards end the game too quickly.
    • Boss monsters end the game too quickly.
    • Combos that end with unbreakable boards end the game too quickly.
    • OTK are too easy to pull off, and end the game too quickly.
    • Turns take too long, especially when playing against combo decks.


  • Not enough creativity in Deckbuilding

    • Decks rely too much on just playing archetypes.
    • Most meta decks all look the same, or play very similar cards.
    • There are not any good decks made up of non-archetype cards.
    • There is not enough variance in the meta;
      There are only ever a few good decks at one time.


  • Not enough alternate formats

    • Other games, such as Pokemon, and Magic,
      have different “Formats”.
    • Different formats allow people to play in different ways.
    • Competitive formats would appeal to competitive players;
      Casual formats would appeal to casual players.
    • More formats would lower the price of expensive cards on the secondary market.


  • Cards have too much text/Text is too small

    • Size of text on cards is too small.
    • Cards have too much text, EG
      (Kozmo Dark Planet).
    • Cards have too many effects
      (Which leads to complexity
      and ruling misunderstandings).


Compiling the Data

I also went ahead and counted the number of upvotes on each comment, in order to get an idea of how many people agree with each statement. As you can see in the chart below, the three “Major” categories are the lack of Banlist Dates, the Lack of Creativity, and the dominance of Floodgates and Bosses.

Note that the “Lack of Communication” from konami is mostly only complaints about the banlist.
As such, I’ve separated that factor into 2 different segments.



The Solution

So now that we’ve collected all of this data concerning our beloved game, what can we do about it? Lots of the issues discussed on this list can only be solved by Konami. For example, the rarity of cards – and the reprinting of cards – isn’t an issue the playerbase can easily solve. We can’t force konami to communicate more either, nor can we magically change the size of text on cards. So what can we do?

The answer can be found in a combination of all the remaining complaints. Three of the remaining factors – Too many “I win” cards, the Speed of the game, and the Lack of creativity thereof, are all features that can be solved by the final issue: The Lack of Formats.

Imagine if there was a different way to play the game; A game which is still Yugioh, but allows for more creativity, allows for fairly-paced gameplay, and removes all of the toxic floodgates and unkillable boss monsters. Sounds pretty good, right? It’d be a format with the modern-day appeal of Goat control; A format without unfair Boss Monsters and unbalaced Floodgates; A format where it’s possible to have near unlimited deckbuilding choices – And to have those choices matter.


Well, this utopia doesn’t have to be just a dream. It already exists – In fact, it was made precisely to counter all of the above issues.
Trinity is exactly the same as regular yugioh, but with a few tweaks to the ruleset that balance the game, and fix all of the problems we’ve been talking about. In fact, even the issues concerning Konami, that “The playerbase cannot fix”, can be remedied through Trinity. Let me explain;

Firstly, here’s a link to the Trinity Banlist.

The first thing you might notice is that the list is much, much shorter than the TCG and OCG banlists. This not only serves to make it easier to remember what is on the list, but is also just a product of some of the rule changes.


Rule Changes

Decks cannot normally contain more than 1 copy of each Unlimited Card

This one is simple to explain: As long as a card is Unlimited, you can’t (usually) put more than 1 copy of it in your deck. The purpose of this rule change is to create more variance in deck building, and to make decks cheaper.

  • Usually, decks play 3 copies of every unlimited card (for consistency), meaning that there are usually only 15 or so different cards in a 40-card maindeck.
    • Because you’re now restricted to 1 copy of each unlimited card, your maindeck is going to contain three times as many unique cards as before
    • This means that you need to think three times as hard when deckbuilding.
    • This also rewards players who have a large knowledge of the card pool.
  • You no longer have to buy 3 copies of an expensive card. You now only have to own 1 copy of that expensive card
    • This can cut deckbuilding costs down three times as much, since you only need one third of the amount of expensive cards as you did before.


The minimum maindeck size is reduced from 40 to 30

Again, this rule change is super straightforward: Instead of having a 40 card deck, you’re now allowed to have a 30-card deck. This rule change is here to work in conjunction with some later rule changes (lots of players actually choose to play 40 or even 60 card maindecks in this format. You’ll see why in a bit).

  • Note that there are still more unique cards in a 30-card Trinity maindeck, as you’re restricted to 1 copy of each card.
    • In a 30-card maindeck, you’re going to have 30 unique cards. This is still at least double the card uniqueness of a typical TCG deck.

“Decks cannot normally include any copies of proscribed cards,
but for every 5 cards above the minimum deck size,
that deck may include 1 additional copy of 1 Proscribed card
or 1 Unlimited Card .
Decks may never play more than one copy of each Proscribed card.”

This last one is a bit longer. I’ll break it down. Imagine a proscribed card as a mixture of a Limited card and a Banned card.
Normally, you can’t play any proscribed cards. But if you have a larger maindeck, you’re allowed to play more of them. This is also true for Unlimited cards: If you have more cards in your deck, you’re allowed additional copies of Unlimited cards. Here are some examples:

A 30-card deck isn’t allowed to play any proscribed cards or extra copies of any Unlimited cards.

A 40-card deck is allowed:

  • 2 Extra Proscribed cards, EG Monster Reborn and Confiscation.
  • OR 2 Extra maindecked copies of an unlimited card, EG Torrential Tribute (Total: 3 copies)
  • OR 1 Extra Proscribed card AND 1 second copy of an Unlimited card.

A 60-card deck could have a total of 6 Additional cards – So you could play 6 different Proscribed cards, or 3 maindecked Bujin Yamato and 3 maindecked Fire Formation – Tenki, as well as 3 maindecked Mystical Space Typhoon, or whatever you like.
The deckbuilding possibilities are endless.

Note that, by playing an extra copy of an unlimited card, your hypergeometric probability of drawing that card increases by more than it decreases. In layman’s terms, if you want to consistently draw a certain card, playing more of that card will increase your chances of drawing it.


What are the reasons for adding proscribed cards to the format?

  • Banning a card stops you from playing it in any deck.
    • Proscribing a card is like a “Soft ban”. It removes overly powerful cards from the front of the meta while keeping them viable for hardcore players that really enjoyed those powerful cards.
  • It increases creativity in deckbuilding.
    • Increasing your deck size makes your overall strategy less consistent, but is it worth it to play those super-powerful cards?
  • It breathes new life into otherwise eternally banned cards.
    • Proscribed cards can still be played. Banned cards can’t be played. Proscribing a card allows players to play with broken cards, but without forcing those cards to be played in every single deck.

One last rule of Trinity format is :

“Neither player can summon/set more than a combined total of 3 effect monsters each turn. (This does not include Flip Summons. Summoning 2 monsters simultaneously counts as 2 summons)”

The purpose of this summoning limit is to slow down the game, and to stop degenerate FTK/OTK decks!



Phew! This has been a very long article already, but i’m quickly going to cover the main topics covered:

  • Trinity format makes decks less expensive
    • You’re able to play less of the expensive cards and more of the cheap ones.
    • The format is more diverse, so cheaper strategies are meta-viable.
  • This Format is made by the fans.
    • You can communicate with the format whenever you like.
    • We will reply.
  • Banlists, from now on, come out on the First of Every Month.
    • Banlists are made by the players.
    • Your views on the format can affect the Banlist.
  • All Major Floodgates are proscribed.
    • You see them less often – if at all- and they have less of an effect of the game.
    • All “Unkillable” boss monsters are banned.
  • Trinity is slow, like Goat Control.
    • Games typically last around 10 turns. Turns each last a minute at most.
    • There are no viable “Unbreakable turn 1 board” combos that last an hour.
  • Creativity is the forefront of the Format.
    • Every single rule change adds a new spin on deckbuilding
    • Slower formats mean more decision trees and skill-based gameplay

Rember: Trinity format is Made by the Fans.
That’s you.
You are the person who is able to help this format grow and prosper.
You are the person who is able to spread the word that this format exists.
Your voice can be heard. We will listen.




Creator of the Trinity Format; article writer and tabletop games enthusiast.

2 thoughts on “Yu-Gi-Oh! – Repair & Overhaul

  • September 22, 2017 at 3:42 pm



    I’m not trying to sound like I’m complaining, but I just started playing again after since synchro’s. All these problems are so true especially with so many unbeatable monsters (like that xyz dragon that stops you from attacking) and stall decks. It either ends in like 7 turns due to OTK or it takes 30 turns or more, because of a bunch a spells and traps prolonging the game.

  • September 22, 2017 at 5:41 pm



    I just miss the days with the back and forth battle. you hit me I hit you and so on it was exciting. every time I played a zoo deck I just imagined what their face would look like after I hit them with my chair. I actually called for a ruling after the dudes turn hit the 15 minute mark, to which I was told as long as he is making moves and doing things he is allowed to take as much time as he needs. and then he surrenders after I hit him with a dark hole. I mean come on. competitive decks my ass. Its a bunch of robots doing the same thing to try and win because that’s the easiest way. these people would have been demolished in the old days. granted you have to do things to keep people interested but setting up your field turn one to stop and negate everything is ridiculous. like what’s the point of a duel. are we trying to do the whole walk ten paces turn and shoot. bam its over. they say zoo is dead because 2 cards were banned. damn if you whole deck fell apart with the loss of just 2 cards then you didn’t have a deck. you had a pile of cards built to do 1 thing. having a deck that can conform to multiple situations was the normal. yeah you had a card you wanted to get out, but the deck was not made solely for that 1 card. nobody builds what they like. they build what wins. and there in lies the problem. build what you like and try to win with it. don’t do like everyone else and jump off the cliff. be your own person.

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