Fusion Summoning – Yugioh Rulebook

Fusion Summoning gives players the chance to combine two or more monsters into one that is generally going to be more powerful. Because of the risk involved in sacrificing monsters, the Fusion mechanic has gone from a playful and flashy adaptation, meant to appeal to fans of the show, to an integral component of some of the best decks. Here I describe the way Fusion Summoning works as a guide to help you decide what’s right for your deck.

Fusion Summoning: Basic Mechanics

A Fusion Summon is a type of Special Summon, a free summon, and does not count against your once-per-turn Normal Summon. Fusion Monsters are purple and kept in a separate deck, the Extra Deck. You can Fusion Summon as many times as you want per turn as long as you have Fusion Monsters to summon, unless a card effect restricts summoning.

The way a Fusion Monster is summoned looks like this:

2 (or more) Monsters
+ Fusion Event
   Fusion Monster

The “2 (or more) Monsters part is easy. On every Fusion Monster, it states what other monsters you’ll need to use as Fusion Material to summon it. For a Basic Fusion, which uses Polymerization, your monsters can be in your hand or on the field. More advanced fusions allow you to use material from almost anywhere. There are exceptions to every rule and game mechanic in Yu-Gi-Oh, but these are the general rules for Fusion Monsters that the game uses to operates.

Fusion Events

A Fusion Event is any action that leads to a Fusion Monster being summoned. There are 4 Types of Fusion Events:

Spell Fusion Events

Activating a spell and having it’s effect summon a fusion monster is by far the most common type of fusion in Yu-Gi-Oh. Take the oldest card, Polymerization, for example.

Polymerization - The Default Fusion Summoning Tool

Spell Card: Polymerization

A player wants to summon Gaia the Dragon Champion by using Gaia the Fierce Knight and Curse of Dragon, the two monsters listed on the Gaia the Dragon Champion card. They plan to use the spell card Polymerization.

Polymerization is played and, when the effect resolves, Gaia the Fierce Knight is taken from the field and Curse of Dragon is taken from the hand. Both are sent to the graveyard and Gaia the Dragon Champion is taken from the Extra Deck and played to the field.

This is considered a Spell Fusion. The Spell’s effect resolving is the event that causes both monsters to fuse. If a Fusion Spell (or trap effect or monster effect) is negated, the monsters you intended to fuse are left in their places. On the field or in the hand, monsters do not go to the graveyard unless the Fusion Spell resolves.

Other Fusion Spell cards include Shaddoll Fusion, Miracle Fusion, Power Bond, and Fusion Gate.

Trap Fusion Events

Activating a Trap and having it’s effect summon a fusion monster is not a widely used form of fusion in Yu-Gi-Oh. In fact, there are only a few ways it’s done, Pyroxene Fusion, Fragment Fusion, and Frightfur March. Let’s use Frightfur March as an example since its the most complex option we have.

Frightfur March - A Unique Fusion Summoning Counter Trap

Counter Trap: Frightfur March

Frightfur March is a multi-effect Counter Trap card.

A player has a face-up Frightfur Wolf and a Frightfur March set. The opponent targets the Frightfur Wolf with the Quick-Play Spell Book of Moon. Frightfur March activates.

The first effect, the negation effect, negates Book of Moon and destroys it. The next effect sends the targeted Frightfur Wolf to the graveyard. The final effect is a Fusion Event that Special Summons the level 8 Frightfur Sabre-tooth as a Fusion Summon.

This card breaks a rule of Fusion Summoning, kind of. Frightfur March only requires a single monster to summon a Fusion. Even though all Frightfur Monsters are Fusions, so this is technically a replacement, the card still does Fusion Summon a monster.

It does this by considering the Summom a Special Summon, then treating that Summon as a Fusion Summon. I’ll go into what happens with Special Summoned Fusion Monsters in the section Properly Fusion Summoning.

So now that we’ve done a Trap Fusion and seen that it follows the same process as a Spell Fusion, lets move on to Monster Effect Fusions.

Monster Effect Fusion Events

Monster based, or forced, however you look at it, Fusion Summoning is weird. It’s probably the least conventional methods of Fusion, but because of that, it might be the most interesting. Here’s an example of a Monster Fusion Event.

A player wants to summon Superalloy Beast Raptinus, which requires 2 Gemini Monsters to fuse, with the two Gemini Monsters on their field (Gemini Soldier and Gigaplant). However, they don’t have any spell or any trap that can create a Fusion Event. They summon Performapal Splashmammoth, which allows the player to Fusion Summon any Dragon-Fusion during their main phase.

The player activates Mammoth’s effect, which requires that this player’s Fusion Material be on the field. Since Gemini Soldier and Gigaplant are both on the field, the effect resolves, both monsters are sent to the graveyard, and Superalloy Beast Raptinus is Fusion Summoned – easy.

Inherent Fusion Events

An Inherent Fusion Event is one that does not require an effect to start the process. Simply having the material and declaring that you wish to fuse them is enough. These Fusion monsters will always say “Must first be Special Summoned (from your Extra Deck) by” and “You do not use Polymerization”, so they’re pretty easy to spot.

The interesting thing about these Inherent Fusions is that none of them are actually Fusion Summoned. These monsters are purple, yes, but their specific ways to summon them are strictly Special Summoning, so they avoid any cards that prevent Fusion Summoning specifically.

These Fusions are unofficially-ish referred to as Contact Fusions. You must control the material on the field, though the monsters do not have to be face-up. Face-down monsters must be revealed (not flipped) before a fusion event can resolve to allow both players to verify that the fusion material is valid.

Let’s look at an example.

Our player controls 2 monsters, Gladiator Beast Bestari and Gladiator Beast Darius. Bestari is set and Darius is in Attack mode. Our player declares that he’s attempting to Special Summon Gladiator Beast Gyzarus.

In order to carry out the Summon, the player reveals the face-down Bestari and, as stated in the card text of Gyzarus, returns both Bestari and Darius to the deck, then places Gyzarus on the field. All the steps of an effect based fusion are carried out with no need to activate another card to do it, the player met the conditions to make the fusion happen.

Inherent vs Effect Fusions

The main difference is that Inherent Fusions use up the cards immediately, as if the Fusion was successfully performed, so it’s a riskier. With an effect based Fusion, if your opponent negates the spell, trap, or monster effect that initiated the event, then it ends there, and you lose nothing but that initial card.

On the other hand, Inherent Fusions require one less card to be performed, they are more automatic because all that you need are the fusion material monsters on the board. However, there are only a handful of Inherent Fusions [Ritual Beasts, Gladiator Beasts, Chimeratech Fortress Dragon, Neos Fusions, etc], and their play-ability is very influenced by the metagame.

The summon of Inherent Fusion can be negated before they hit the field by cards like Thunderking Rai-Oh, Solemn Warning, and Steelswarm Roach. They can also be responded to by cards like Bottomless Trap and other cards that activate when a monster is summoned, while monsters summoned through the effect of another card have a little more protection. Their summon cannot be negated, only the effect of the card used to initiate the fusion event can be negated, but of course, once they hit the field, they are vulnerable to the same when-summoned traps.

Fusion Substitutes

The Light - Hex-Sealed Fusion

Example of a Fusion Substitute Monster

Fusion Substitute monsters provide a great way to quickly collect the fusion material needed. There are a few times where fusion substitute monsters cannot be used:

  • Inherent Fusions
    • These monsters always require that you control the Fusion Material monsters listed in their card text. If a fusion substitute monster can change its name, great, use it, but otherwise it is excluded.
    • And remember, Inherent Fusion monsters are Special Summoned, not Fusion Summoned, so there’s no reason for Fusion Substitutes to work for them.
  • Strict or “Closed” Fusions
    • When a Fusion Monster specifically states: A Fusion Summon of this monster can only be conducted with the above Fusion Material Monsters, Fusion Subs cannot be used.
      • Again, these types of Fusions require the fusion material to be of the same name as the ones listed in the card text.
      • It’s impossible to change the name of a card in your hand, but changing the name of a card on the field will make it a valid Fusion Material.

Fusion Alternatives

Cards like Instant Fusion and Cyber Stein, Magical Scientist and Summoner of Illusions can summon our purple friends from the extra deck without the need to have any of the fusion material.

Fusion Alternatives are all going to be Effect Based (Spell, Trap, Monster Eff) Fusions or Special Summons, and it’s important to figure out which type of summon (Fusion/Special Summon) the card is providing. For example, some monsters can be Special Summoned any way you choose, but must be Fusion Summoned in strict ways.

Properly Fusion Summoning

A proper summon of a Fusion Monster is when a player uses the Fusion Event method listed in the card text of a Fusion Monster (Polymerization, Contact Fusion, Strict Fusion) etc. Or, when that player uses a Fusion Alternative that specifically says the summon of a monster will be treated as a Fusion Summon (like Instant Fusion).

If a Fusion Monster is Special Summoned from the extra deck without undergoing a proper Fusion Event, it cannot be Special Summoned from the Graveyard or Banished Zone after it leaves the field. This restriction encourages players to properly use Fusions in order to get their full potential.


Questions and Comments

If any questions come up while your reading this, perhaps it’s of a specific situation or card, feel free to leave it in the comments or reach out to me on twitter @mattcarterwa. But most of all, if you found this article interesting or helpful, let me know in the comments or like the page!


Advanced Yugioh Logic – The Draw Phase

I’m going to take a few articles to go over the kinds of terminology, actions, and interactions players can have throughout their turn.


With the Problem Solving Card Text, doing what your cards tell you is fairly easy. But layering card effects against your opponent’s effects, and trying to adhere to the rules of the 6 phases can sometimes be confusing.



You actually do something in it, unlike the Standby Phase.

The Draw Phase is triggered, or begins, after one of two Events.

The first Event is at the beginning of the duel when you declare that you are starting your Draw Phase. You draw your card and then things begin.

For the rest of the duel, the Draw Phase is triggered immediately after the end of your Opponent’s turn, after they have completed their End Phase.

A “Draw” is considered picking up the top card of your deck and adding it to your hand. Drawing and adding a card to your hand is the first Event (the ‘Draw Event’) that occurs in the Draw Phase, and those two things happen simultaneously. In most cases, players cannot activate any effects before the Draw, but there are a few exceptions that I’ll address later.

After you draw, you retain the ability to activate Spell Speed 2 effects first. This is known as Turn-Player Priority.

For example:
Your Opponent declares an end to their turn, snapping the Game State to your Draw Phase. You draw a Mystical Space Typhoon and add it to your hand. At this time, your opponent cannot activate any card effects.

As the turn player, you retain the right to activate the first Spell Speed 2 effect during each Phase of your turn. You decide to hang on to your MST, and ask if your opponent would like to play any cards after the Draw Event, this passes priority to them. They say no, passing priority back to you, leaving the game in an Open Game State, allowing you to declare an end to the Draw Phase (or activate a Spell Speed 2 effect).

A Trickier Example:
You draw, it’s an MST again, but this time you know your opponent is playing Drastic Drop Off. DDO is a Counter Trap that can be activated when cards are Drawn or Added to the hand. It discards the draw, or a single card if multiple cards are drawn or added.

You know your opponent is playing Drastic Drop Off, and it’s a Counter Trap, so can it rip that MST right out of your hand?

As the turn player, you retain the right to activate the first Spell Speed 2 effect after an Event or at the start of each Phase of your turn.

You decide to play your MST this time, but you don’t hit a Drastic Drop Off. It’s fine though, since MST is out of your hand, DDO now has nothing to discard.

The Draw Phase – Step By Step

  1. Draw Phase Maintenance: The “Game” checks if there are any effects which change the rules of the Draw Phase, or affect the Draw.
  2. The Draw Event.
  3. This step gives you Priority to activate Spell Speed 2 effects.
  4. Whether you play a card or not, this step passes Priority to your Opponent, allowing them to activate a Spell Speed 2 effect, or respond to yours. Assuming they don’t play anything….
  5. This step returns Priority to you, allowing the next step to be one of two things.
  6. You may activate a Spell Speed 2 card effect, or declare an end to the Draw Phase.
  7. Your opponent can respond to this Event, or pass control of the Draw Phase to the “Game.”
  8. The “Game” triggers the next phase, the Standby Phase.

The Draw Phase vs Eradicator Epidemic Virus
The Draw Phase vs Deck Devastation Virus
The Draw Phase vs Crush Card Virus

Unlike Drastic Drop Off, which says that you discard a card after you draw it, the Virus’ “observe” a card as it is being drawn, essentially Revealing it to both players.

The Viruses are effects that resolve over the course of a specific number of turns, and must be carried out. So forgetting to reveal your draw is a way to get yourself a game loss during a tournament.

The Draw Phase vs Heart of the Underdog

Cards like Heart of the Underdog, that give you additional draws, use your Turn-Player priority to be the first thing that happens after the Draw Event.

You draw Elemental Hero Sparkman, a Normal Monster, while you control an active Heart of the Underdog. You reveal it, choosing to activate the effect of Heart of the Underdog.

This particular effect, since it happens after your Draw, becomes the first response to the Draw Event. It uses your Turn Player Priority to get that first spot and immediately passes priority to your opponent.

Effects that Happen Before the Draw

There are a few effects that occur before the Draw, but still during the Draw Phase. They access something I call the Draw Phase Maintenance area.

Hino-Kagu-Tsuchi is a monster card that discards your hand during the Draw Phase, before you draw.

HKTs will trigger the effects of cards that activate when they are discarded (Darkworld, Fabled), even though card effects aren’t supposed to activate before the Draw (which is Broken: A card that does not work as intended). Your opponent can also respond to those effects. It’s a situation that will likely never happen, but it’s unfortunate that it exists because it breaks the rules of the game.

I would prefer it if HKTs effect would activate when a player declares that they are drawing, resolve, and then the turn player would draw immediately after that, forcing the game-state to continue where it should – after the draw. Turn-Priority would continue as normal, where Fabled effects would work like Heart of the Underdog and be the first effect after the Draw. It would ruin anything that misses the timing, but that’s better to me than having illogical game-play.

Pikeru’s Second Sight is another interesting card. It states that the opponent must show you any card(s) they draw before adding it to the hand. As stated, picking up a card from the top of your deck and adding it to your hand is considered a Draw.

Granted, Pikeru’s Second Sight is an old card from the Lost Millenium set, but they add a step to drawing that doesn’t exist, instead of using the very easy word “reveal.”

Diablos, King of the Abyss, and Maharaghi allow you to look at the top card of the deck and either put it back on top, or place it on the bottom of the deck. Card effects like this are perfectly OK, as they are directly attached to the Draw Event, and do not have the potential to set off a chain reaction of effects like Hino-Kagu-Tsuchi. They’re in the same class as the Deck Viruses, where their effects are specifically related to the Draw.

There’s also cards that either change the draw or replace it altogether. 

Cards that change the draw, like Freed the Matchless General, tend to allow you to add a specific card from your deck to your hand, instead of drawing a random card from your deck.

Then there are cards that replace the Draw, like Flame Tiger. Instead of drawing, or gaining a new card from your deck, you Special Summon Flame Tiger from your graveyard.

I did my best to make sure this report was accurate, but if you find anything inconsistent with what you know, or feel that something is missing from here, please don’t hesitate to share it, along with any questions you have!

The next article will be Advanced Yugioh Logic: The Standby Phase and The “Game”.