HALF of the first season is nothing but one shot episodes that don't even matter to the overall story and even when they establish the plot it still delves away from it and does something completely different. Hell in the MAIN PROTAGONIST Judai-Kun is a one dimensional character for 3/4 of the series and when he finally does get developed he becomes an *beep* (he has his moments but overall an *beep* not to mention he hogs 70-80% of the screen time).
Thanks to the Leo Corporation, headed by Meiji Arab, new advancements to Solid Vision, the holographic system that gives life to the Duel Monsters card game, give physical mass to monsters... See full summary ». So far the latest Yugo series is shaping up to be an amazing one.
I didn't know this series existed until about 6 months ago, and it was at EP. Since this is still an ongoing series (100 Episodes on the date I made this list: April 7th, 2016) and we still have another year at the least since Yugo series generally end around this time of the year I'll guess by April next year Arc-V will be over, or it'll be close to wrapping up.
But since I'm not spoiling anything I'll just say: It has amazing writing, a VERY interesting lead character, the best female lead we've had since 5Ds, a cool rival, and the fact that EVERY Extra Deck mechanic (Fusion, Synchro, XYZ, & Pendulum) Play an important part in the story helps as well. Not to mention if you enjoyed past series you'll be delighted to know that this is essentially serving as a 20th anniversary series to the franchise by having older characters make a return.
So far Jack & Crow from 5Ds have reappeared and had big roles in the series, Alexis Rhodes & Aster Phoenix from GO are scheduled to appear, and Kieth Ten from Zeal is scheduled to appear. 8/10 (I could bump it up in the future depending on how the rest of this series goes).
The first 73 episodes of Zeal are what really turn fans away from this series. The last half of Zeal however is SOON good, it's honestly one of my favorite Yugo Story Arcs.
Yuma however does have some good development going from a terrible duelist into an amazing one. Overall Zeal is better than what most people credit for and if you haven't seen don't listen to the negative things others say about it.
You should watch it for yourself to judge it (or at least the last half of the series or “Zeal II”). A young boy named Yuri Auto defeats the world Champion, Set Kaaba, in a duel with the help of the mysterious Millennium puzzle, the support of the friends and the heart of the cards.
“HOW could you put the holy, almighty Duel Monsters at the SECOND best series when it should be Numbed ONE?!?!?” Yes, the original is my 2nd favorite Yugo series but that doesn't mean it's terrible.
Even now after 15+ years IMO the original Yugo series is still one of the best series to date with an excellent story, the OG Protagonist Yuri, along with Kaaba and Joey oh the memories but even my nostalgia with this series won't save it from the flaws it has. As far as the anime goes Yuri will always be the best duelist but in a real game Yuma, Yuma, & Yuma would thoroughly hand Yuri his ass on a silver platter.
AOI/Blue Angel is the most interesting female lead since Akita, Emma is waif material and a fairly interesting character, Revolver is a BOSS rival character. There lies a strong divide between the rich and the poor, and... See full summary ».
Yugo 5Ds has the best set of main characters WHO ALL have a purpose to the story, they all have a personality, and they're all developed. People hate him for his constant friendship speeches but given the fact that the Yugo franchise is about bonds/friendships and the backstory of EVERY main character and the meaning of Yuma's name they're right on the money and Yuma has every right to give a friendship speech.
Jack Atlas is a nice throwback to Kaiba, but he has more development as a character, Crow is a diet version of Joey if you will but more likeable. 5Ds has a truly excellent story, amazing duels, and GREAT characters (Hell Yuma and Akita are HEAVILY implied to be in love and get together at the end of the series and that's something we NEVER or hardly ever see in this franchise, even Yuma's VA believes they get together, or they will).
Tells the story of Yuri Auto as he battles powerful opponents through a special card game. The idea that these girls play WIDOWS with the greater goal to have their wishes granted is also considerably more innocent than many of the other series looked at here.
Bey blade takes the same idea, but instead, it uses a complex series of spinning tops that are pushed to battle against each other. 'S audience and while the anime can be shallow at times, the battle top concept is unique, and it's impressive that these toys were actually produced and became a genuine fad for a while.
It's a unique take on meccas that turns the heightened genre into something that's akin to kids playing around with action figures, but with explosive results. For those that are hungry for more, Angelic Layer also takes place in the same universe as Ch obits, which deals with similar ideas.
Hikaru No Go is a unique exception because it retains the atmosphere of competitive young duelists who are determined to be the best, but this anime is based around the classical board game, Go, rather than a new creation. The Mobile Suit Gun dam franchise has been a powerhouse for decades, and it’s gained a strong following, both as an anime and a series of model-building kits.
Features battles that take place between incredible monsters, albeit through the use of card games. The two anime are extremely similar in both premise and tone, but Duel Masters also feels like it pulls inspiration from something like Avatar: The Last Air bender.
Monsters come to life through competitive card duels and the world is divided up into elemental sanctions. The plucky protagonist, Show, just wants to be the best duel master and this engaging series has been able to endure for hundreds of episodes and spawn its own actual card game, too.
Vanguard is an important battle anime that strives for more, even if it does initially resemble comparable shows of the genre. Daniel’s work can be read on Screencast, Splendider, Bloody Disgusting, Den of Geek, and across the Internet.
When countless rivals emerge to steal his spotlight, Yuma needs to gear up his game because dueling has evolved into a non-stop world of action! With this fact in mind, it's no secret that there are many types of duels in the series, there are levels to their quality, per se.
He infused Joey's deck with plenty of powerful magic cards that would help him to beat his friend. Yuri's goal the entire time wasn't to win, but rather to find a way that both of them would manage to stay safe, as both of their lives were on the line.
Eventually, Yuri and Joey were able to work together to end the duel in a draw, and both barely made it out alive. Joey manages to do the unthinkable and stand up to the power of Ra, much to the disbelief of everyone, including even Kaaba.
While he, unfortunately, wasn't able to call out his final attack to win the duel, his brawl against Mark showed off just how powerful of a duelist Joey really is. While the mechanics of her summoning is laughable at best, the fact that she debuted in this duel while managing to take down Ar kana's second Dark Magician is nothing short of iconic.
Staying on the Yuri and Kaaba train for a minute, and actually cheating a bit because this isn't technically part of the series, the duel between Kaaba and Yuri is action-packed, and the improved animations in the movie make it an absolute sight to behold. Plus, the two have vastly improved their decks since the list time we saw them, and watching them volley the power back and forth is wonderfully nostalgic for fans.
Sure, the labyrinth duel between Para and Dox might make no sense, but it's still a ton of fun to watch go down. In it, Yuri and Joey are forced to navigate their monsters through a labyrinth that they're unfamiliar with, while Para and Dox pull out all the stops to beat them and leave them trapped below Duelist Kingdom forever.
Eventually, Yuri and Joey manage to combine their forces and take down the brothers at their own game. Yuri and Leon's duel in the finals of the KC Grand Championship is absolutely insane.