In 1998, Bandai obtained a license to create Yu-Gi-Oh! merchandise from Toei Animation (the company that created the original Yu-Gi-Oh! anime). On April 4th, 1998, to coincide with the release of Episode 1 of Toei Animation's anime, Bandai released the 1st Generation of their card game, which included 42 cards. On the same day, they also released 3 limited print promotional cards, which were Mirror Force, Swords of Revealing Light and Gate Guardian. On July 4th, 1998, Bandai released the 2nd Generation of their card game which included 46 cards. On October 10th, 1998, to coincide the final episode of the Toei Animation anime series, Bandai released the 3rd Generation of their card game which included 30 cards. On the same day Bandai also released 2 promotional cards which were Wicked Chain and Blue-Eyes White Dragon’s 3-Body Connection.
On January 20th, 1999, Yu-Gi-Oh! Bandai Sealdass was released, which was a set of 43 sticker cards. The Sealdass set would be the last Yu-Gi-Oh! product Bandai would ever produce, as Konami obtained exclusive rights to the Yu-Gi-Oh! brand around this time. Konami had previously created Yu-Gi-Oh! cards that were released in 1998 with the games Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Capsule: Breed and Battle and Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters.
See also: List of Bandai cards
There are only 13 official rules in this game:
- ~Rule ➀~
- Both players must use the same number of cards as their Decks.
- ~Rule ➁~
- Draw 5 cards from your Deck to form your hand.
- ~Rule ➂~
- Select 1 Monster Card from your hand and play it to start a Battle.
- ~Rule ➃~
- To determine the result of the battle, compare the ATK of your attacking monster with the DEF of the attacked monster.
- ~Rule ➄~
- If your monster's ATK is higher, your opponent's monster is destroyed.
- ~Rule ➅~
- Even if you destroy the opponent's monster, if the DEF of your monster is lower than the ATK of your opponent's monster, your monster is also destroyed.
- ~Rule ➆~
- When the battle ends, draw 1 card from your Deck and you can end your turn.
- ~Rule ➇~
- Each turn will continue like this, until both players' Decks are empty.
- ~Rule ➈~
- Each player counts the total Level Stars of all monsters that they destroyed. The player with the highest amount is declared the winner.
- ~Rule ➉~
- If you have Spell, Trap or Equip Cards in your hand, you can put them in play face-down.
- ~Rule ⑪~
- You can activate your face-down Spell, Trap or Equip Cards at any time during a battle.
- ~Rule ⑫~
- When the effect of a Spell, Trap or Equip Card is used, it is discarded.
- ~Rule ⑬~
- When a player's Deck is empty, the Duel will continue until the other player's Deck is empty as well.
Each Monster Card (that had no special effect of its own) had 1 of these rules printed on its card text. It should also be noted that all Bandai OCG cards had a yellow background, regardless to whether they were Monster, Spell, Trap or Equip Card (Equip Cards were treated as a distinct class of card, not as Spell Cards).