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"Elemental HERO" (Japanese:
They were designed by Kazuki Takahashi, and are themed after comic-book superheroes from the anime and are based off natural elements in the manga.
"Elemental HERO" Decks focus heavily on Fusion Summoning. Most of these fall into two primary "Elemental HERO" monsters categories that can be fused with one another. Normal Monsters from the TV series (Named Materials for Fusion Summoning) and manga counterparts that are retrained versions with effects (Fusion Materials are generic). See 'Grouping' section for more information.
"Avian", "Burstinatrix", "Clayman" and "Bubbleman" are often grouped together because there is at least one Fusion Monster for each pair of them (except "Avian" and "Clayman"), as well as "Elemental HERO Electrum" using all 4 as Fusion Materials.
"Sparkman" was introduced very early on and is usually on cards like "Fifth Hope" and "HERO's Bond". "Sparkman" has the most fusions than any other Elemental HERO, other than "Neos", with a total of 6 ("Thunder Giant", "Tempest", "Shining Flare Wingman", "Shining Phoenix Enforcer", "Plasma Vice", and "Darkbright").
The manga "Elemental HERO" monsters (unoffically called "Omni Heroes") are also grouped together since they don't have fusions with the anime "Elemental HERO" monsters. These include "Ocean", "Woodsman", "Heat", and "Lady Heat".
The Elemental HEROes' designs are based after the western comics' heroes. In the Japanese version, their nomenclature is "Elemental HERO (term related to its element) "man" (for the masculine heroes, with the only exception of "Prisma"). The only feminine heroes are "Burstinatrix", "Lady Heat", "Poison Rose" and "Shadow Mist" (the first two having "Lady" instead of "Man" in their Japanese name). Some of the names are changed in the English version.
As the name says, the "Elemental HEROes" each represent an element of nature. In western culture, the main elements are fire, water, air, earth, light and darkness, but in eastern culture, more elements are considered, such as lightning, wood, metal and ice, though ice is many times not considered since it's part of "water".
The manga doesn't follow the same theme as the anime, but the heroes still are based after those same elements.
Elemental HERO" Decks mainly focus on using cards like "Miracle Fusion", "Polymerization", and "Super Polymerization" to Fusion Summon a variety of Fusion Monsters. For "Elemental HERO" Fusion Monsters with specified names, "King of the Swamp" and "Elemental HERO Woodsman" can be used to search/recycle copies of "Polymerization". It has also become common to play Xyz Monsters like "Number 39: Utopia"," Dark Rebellion Xyz Dragon","Steelswarm Roach", "Blade Armor Ninja" and "Maestroke the Symphony Djinn".
As with the release of the "Omni HEROs" ("Elemental HERO Nova Master", "Elemental HERO Absolute Zero", "Elemental HERO Gaia", "Elemental HERO The Shining", "Elemental HERO Escurido" and "Elemental HERO Great Tornado"), as well the as two "Vision HEROs" ("Vision HERO Adoration" and "Vision HERO Trinity"), all "Elemental HEROs" can be fused together with each other, as well as other "HEROs". The "Omni HEROs" basically allow the "Elemental HEROs" to exist in any deck focused on an archetype of monsters with the same Attribute, and each Attribute allows these "Elemental HEROs" access to Attribute-specific support cards.
"Elemental HERO" monsters can be Searched from the Deck using E - Emergency Call, Reinforcement of the Army, A Hero Lives, Hero Signal, and Summoner Monk (who would also be a good qualification, since "HERO" decks rely on a lot of Spell Cards to add Fusion-Material Monsters to your hand and Fusion Summon).
Recycling Fusion Material Monsters will allow you future use of fusion material. Elemental HERO Voltic is perfect for recyling Banished Elemental HERO monsters and is perfect for comboing off of Fusion Gate and Miracle Fusion. Elemental HERO Ocean and The Warrior Returning Alive will allow recycling HERO monsters from the Graveyard.
Since cards like Torrential Tribute, Bottomless Trap Hole, or Mirror Force can cause the downfall of the deck (by destroying your Fusion Monster(s)), a great way to protect them is with Safe Zone. Not only does it protect your monsters, but it allows for a number of combos. If your opponent activates a Card effect that would destroy this set card, you can Chain it to one of your opponent's monsters and banish that monster upon the card's destruction. You can use Safe Zone to make an almost indestructible Elemental HERO Ocean and keep returning Stratos to your hand, then Summon it to search for any "HERO" card, or even blow up a (minimum) of one Spell/Trap Card. You can also equip Safe Zone to one of your opponent's monsters so it can't be destroyed by battle, and continue to attack the targeted monster with Vision HERO Trinity in order to deplete your opponent's life points.
When playing "Elemental HERO" Decks, you find that a lot of times (with Fusion Gate and Miracle Fusion) that you are Banishing your monsters. D.D.R. - Different Dimension Reincarnation can easily take advantage of this. If things aren't going your way, or you need a back up plan, "D.D.R." would allow you to Special Summon as any banished monster you want, and turn the tides in your favor. Since this is a Special Summon, you can activate the first effect of both "Elemental HERO Shadow Mist" and "Elemental HERO Blazeman".
There is a great combo using Mask Change, Elemental HERO Absolute Zero, and Masked HERO Acid. First fuse any HERO monster and a water attributed monster with Polymerization, or any card that can fuse monsters, to get Elemental HERO Absolute Zero. Use Mask Change to send Elemental HERO Absolute Zero back to the Graveyard and summon Masked HERO Acid, remember that when Elemental HERO Absolute Zero is removed from the field, it destroys all of your opponents monsters, and Masked HERO Acid's effect says that when it is summoned to the field all of your opponents traps/spells are destroyed effectively clearing your opponents field. This combo works perfectly because Masked HERO Acid only needs a water attributed monster like Elemental HERO Absolute Zero and a Change card to be summoned. If your opponent tries to get rid of Elemental HERO Absolute Zero before you can summon Masked HERO Acid remember that Mask Change is a Quick-Play Spell Card, so you can chain it to any move your opponent makes.
"Elemental HERO" Decks, while being strong in the long run, lack the beginning strength. The effect of "Kinetic Soldier" increases its ATK by 2000 when it battles with Warrior-Type monsters, and thus is a great choice as a counter to most of these decks, so heavy Trap support like the "Solemn" series, "Bottomless Trap Hole", "Dimensional Prison" are recommended so the "HEROs" will be able to survive in the early game. Since most "Elemental HERO" Decks heavily rely on Fusions to remain in the game long enough to bring "Elemental HERO Neos" and his fusions out, a good anti-spell Deck will eliminate the activation and use of "Polymerization" and Fusion Spells. Also a Deck with the ability to destroy Fusions, before and after summoning, will also make it easy to take down an "Elemental HERO" Deck. The trap card "Non-Fusion Area," for example, is nothing short of crippling to most "Elemental HERO Decks". "Cursed Seal of the Forbidden Spell" is another example because it negates the activation and the effect of a Spell Card (in this case a Fusion Spell Card) and destroys it and stops the player from using the Fusion Spell Card that he/she tried to use again. Another good choice to permanently cease Fusions Spells in a Duel is "Armageddon Designator". "De-Fusion" will stop Fusion Monsters because the Fusion Material is in the controller's Graveyard, and the other player is able to return the Fusion Monsters without summoning the Fusion Material Monsters, although "Anti-Fusion Device" and "Steelswarm Sting" are good 1 for 1 second choices in simply destroying them. Since Fusion Summons are Special Summons, cards like "Royal Oppression", "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo", "Archlord Kristya" and "Aurora Paragon" can interdict these Decks well—the latter two cards can also cut off use of additional support cards like "Elemental HERO Voltic", "A Hero Lives" and "Hero Signal".
"Elemental HERO" Decks can be better chastened and repelled via cards like "King Tiger Wanghu", "Battle of the Elements", "Gozen Match" "Warrior Elimination", "Ryu Kokki", "Pestilence" and even "4-Starred Ladybug of Doom" (many "Elemental HERO" non-Fusion Monsters are Level 4). These may be just as efficient as anti-Special Summoning/Fusion destroyers, if not worse because their use can be much less passive than say, waiting for Fusion "Elemental HERO" Decks to grace the Field and have a more profound effect against such Decks.
Finally, "Skill Drain" and/or "Angel O7" can cease and desist "HERO" effects, which would be significant against these Decks because without substantial Spell/Trap support, many of the "HERO" monsters, including quite a number of "HERO" Fusion Monsters, do not possess significant sustainability stat-wise whilst on the field.
A deck that can beat "Elemental HERO" decks is a "Blackwing" deck, due to their fast swarming and destructive techniques.