Harpie Ladies "1", "2" and "3"
When "Harpies" were released (some of the first monsters released that would later become an official archetype), they didn't have much support. With the release of Rise of Destiny, however, "Harpies" became more balanced and powerful. Since then, Structure Deck 8: Lord of the Storm has aided the "Harpie" archetype with cards such as "Hysteric Party". Furthermore, "Harpie Queen" was released in Force of the Breaker, and "Cyber Shield" was reintroduced as a common card in Storm of Ragnarok.
In Lord of the Tachyon Galaxy, "Harpies" gained new members and support, including the release of the first Harpie Xyz Monster, "Harpie's Pet Phantasmal Dragon", which is capable of attacking directly as well as protecting your "Harpie" monsters from attacks and targeting effects as long as it has Xyz Material. Also introduced was "Harpie Channeler", which can Special Summon "Harpie" monsters straight from your Deck by discarding 1 "Harpie" card from your hand, as well as open up Rank 7 plays through it's level-changing effect. Additionally, a new Spell Card was introduced called "Hysteric Sign", which can search for "Elegant Egotist" and, upon destruction, add 3 "Harpie" cards with different names from your Deck straight to your hand.
"Harpie Lady Phoenix Formation", released in Legendary Collection 4: Joey's World, is a Spell Card that targets and destroys monsters your opponent controls up to the number of Harpie monsters you control then inflicts damage to your opponent equal to the original ATK of the monster with the highest original ATK destroyed by this effect. You need to have 3 or more "Harpie Lady" and/or "Harpie Lady Sisters" to use this card and if you do, you cannot Special Summon from your Main Deck or Extra Deck, nor conduct your Battle Phase that turn. Also, "Harpie Dancer" from Legendary Collection 4 can give Harpies extra Normal Summoning capabilities and combines well with "Harpies' Hunting Ground" and "Divine Wind of Mist Valley".
"Harpie Lady 1", "Harpie Lady 2", "Harpie Lady 3" and "Cyber Harpie Lady" have the phrase This card's name is treated as "Harpie Lady" in their effect text. Since this text does not specify a place the card has to be in order to be called "Harpie Lady", their name is treated as "Harpie Lady" everywhere, including while in the player's Deck. Due to this, a player can only have a total combination of any 3 of these cards and/or the Normal Monster "Harpie Lady" in their Main Deck and their Side Deck combined (such as 1 "Harpie Lady", 1 "Cyber Harpie Lady", and 1 "Harpie Lady 2").
In the anime, the "Harpies" are the signature cards of Mai Valentine. She often begins with one "Harpie" card and uses support cards to accessorize and multiply it. Joey Wheeler also used some "Harpie" cards as a reminder of his promise to save Mai from her Penalty Game.
A "Harpie Lady" also appears as a Duel Monster Spirit in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX. She battles Jesse Anderson and his "Crystal Beast Sapphire Pegasus". That same "Harpie Lady" later uses the effect of "Elegant Egotist" to multiply into 3, but they were defeated by "Sapphire Pegasus" and "Topaz Tiger".
In Yu-Gi-Oh! The Falsebound Kingdom, the Harpie Ladies are given names, each based on those of three Harpy sisters from Greek mythology:
- Harpie Lady 1 - Airo (from Aello, "storm swift")
- Harpie Lady 2 - Ocupete (from Ocypete, "the swift wing")
- Harpie Lady 3 - Keraino (from Celaeno, "the dark")
Most "Harpies" in the international release of the game, including all language prints except Japanese, and in the anime have been edited to appear to wear bodysuits while in the Japanese versions they wear much more revealing clothing. "Cyber Harpie Lady" and "Harpie Lady Sisters" have had the spikes extruding from their armor removed due to the suggestiveness. However, some earlier printings of a few of the "Harpie" cards outside of Japan (specifically the original "Harpie Lady" and "Harpie Girl") were printed without being censored.
"Harpies" combine the ability to be rapidly summoned, to destroy the opponent's Spell and Trap Cards, to increase each others attack points and abilities, and to work together to protect each other. They do not have the ability to destroy Spell and Trap cards innately, but the Field Spell Card "Harpies' Hunting Ground" allows the controller of the summoned Harpie or harpies to destroy one Spell or Trap Card when a "Harpie Lady" card is Summoned in any way. They can be Summoned from the Graveyard in mass amounts through the effect of "Hysteric Party". Their support cards, "Harpie's Pet Baby Dragon" and "Harpie's Pet Dragon", rapidly gain in power and usefulness through effects including protecting other "Harpie" cards and card destruction as the "Harpies" swarm the field. Properly played, "Harpies" can overwhelm the opponent in moments with high attack power and powerful effects, but they are individually not too strong, so they are vulnerable to opponents who Summon strong single Monsters early to whittle down the number of "Harpies" on the field.
WIND Monsters have good capacity to Special Summon, and as such the Deck can be fast. Although some of the Monsters are weak, cards such as "Harpie Lady 1" and "Hunter Owl" can leave you with a field full of enormous Monsters. The tendency of WIND Monsters to destroy Spell and Trap cards ("Raiza the Storm Monarch", "Harpies' Hunting Ground" and "Icarus Attack") leaves you able to attack in relative safety. Many cards from various packs can be quite useful if made an addition to a "Harpie Lady" deck. Many WIND Monsters, such as "Simorgh, Bird of Ancestry" and "Twin-Headed Behemoth", have useful effects that can help out in tough situations. In particular, "Stardust Dragon" fits perfectly into this type of deck: it is a high level WIND Monster, and its effect allows you to negate a destructive effect, such as that of "Dark Hole" each turn as long as you can keep reviving "Stardust Dragon" with its own effect, making it a great boost to the Deck's theme of destroying and negating your opponent's Spell and Trap cards. Also, it can be used as a instant Beatstick with "Starlight Road".
If a player is going to use Synchro Monsters, then they must use proper tuners. "Vortex the Whirlwind" is a level 5 Synchro Monster with the effect of Special Summoning any Level 4 or lower Winged Beast monster from your Deck. "Mist Valley Soldier" can be used with a "Harpie Lady" monster to make level 8 Synchro Monsters, such as "Stardust Dragon", "Scrap Dragon", or "Crimson Blader" which can do heavy damage to decks that Normal Summon or Special Summon level 5 or higher monsters like "Dragon Ruler", "Mermail", and most Synchro-based decks; also, in an emergency, it can be used with "Icarus Attack". "Blackwing - Gale the Whirlwind" can be used with "Icarus Attack" and can cut in half an opponent's monster such as "Caius the Shadow Monarch", "Stardust Dragon", "Red-Eyes Darkness Metal Dragon", and most powerful Synchro and Xyz monsters. More importantly, you can splash "Blackwing Armor Master", who is immune to crippling cards such as "Shrink" and "Honest", and "Black Rose Dragon", who can clear the field. "Dragunity Darkspear" can be used as either a substitute of "Monster Reborn" or used to summon the incredibly powerful "Dragunity Knight - Trident", who can eliminate the most popular archtypes in the game, such as "Gladiator Beast" and "Blackwings".
"Cockadoodledoo" is a Tuner monster that can be Special Summoned as a level 3 if there are no monsters on the field, making level 7 Synchro monsters (or even "Star Eater" if you summon 2 level 4 Harpie monsters), or it can be Special Summoned as a Level 4 monster if you control no cards and your opponent controls a monster, being able to make a Level 8 Synchro Monster or a Rank 4 Xyz Monster. "Cockadoodledoo" can also be used for "Icarus Attack". "Cockadoodledoo" is a fast and flexible Winged Beast Tuner monster, but it is banished when it leaves the field.
A possible card to use in this deck is "Inferno Reckless Summon". You can first use "Elegant Egotist", "Swallow's Nest" or "Hysteric Party" to Special Summon any "Harpie Lady" whose attack is 1500 or less after applying continuous effects. Then use the effect of "Inferno Reckless Summon" to summon more "Harpies". (You cannot use "Inferno Reckless Summon" with "Harpie Lady #1" because it will gain the extra 300 ATK instantly after being summoned to the field, but, should you Special Summon a different "Harpie Lady" such as "Harpie Lady 2" you would be able to use it as the target monster for "Inferno Reckless Summon's" effect) You can use "Harpie Channeler" however to activate it since she has only 1400 ATK and is treated as "Harpie Lady" while on the field. Since many "Harpie" monsters are treated as "Harpie Lady," you can also use "Three of a Kind" to significantly clear the Field. "Hysteric Sign" can help gain hand advantage by getting an "Elegant Egotist" from your Deck or Graveyard and also can give you any 3 Harpie cards with a different name from your deck upon being sent from your hand or side of the field to the Graveyard during the End Phase giving a +3 (You can only use 1 "Hysteric Sign" effect per turn so if you choose one, you cannot use the other effect til the next turn). You can use "Harpies' Hunting Ground" to destroy your "Hysteric Sign", or discard it to use "Summoner Monk's" Effect to help get your combos out faster.
With Xyz monsters out and the release of new Harpie support cards in Lord of the Tachyon Galaxy, this archetype can have the ability to Xyz Summon Rank 4 monsters quick with "Harpie Channeler", "Elegant Egotist" and "Hysteric Party". "Harpie Channeler" can act like a "Summoner Monk" for Harpies with the cost of 1 Harpie card in your hand, setting up the Graveyard for "Hysteric Party". "Harpie Channeler" can also summon out "Harpie's Pet Dragon" straight from your Deck making it easier to summon, also you can use them for an Xyz summon of a Rank 7 monster like "Gaia Dragon the Thunder Charger", "Number 11: Big Eye", "Mecha Phantom Beast Dracossack", "Number 74: Master of Blades".
"Harpie's Pet Phantasmal Dragon" is a new, powerful Xyz Monster for WIND monsters that can be easily Summoned with "Harpie Channeler", "Elegant Egotist", "Hysteric Party", and even "Rescue Rabbit" if you are using "Harpie Lady". "Harpie's Pet Phantasmal Dragon" can attack directly while it has Xyz Material attached and it can also can protect your Harpie monsters from being targeted for attacks card effects. Another powerful Xyz monster that can be easily summoned in a Harpie deck is "Lightning Chidori". Although not strong in ATK, it has the powerful effect of putting cards your opponent controls into their deck. Also, you can Xyz Summon "Diamond Dire Wolf" which can destroy any card on the field with a cost of itself or one of your Harpie monsters, which can easily be returned to the field with "Hysteric Party". Harpie Decks also have the capability of Summoning Rank 4 monsters that require 3 Level 4 monsters with ease like "Number 32: Shark Drake", "Number 69: Heraldry Crest", "Number 91: Thunder Spark Dragon", "Number 104: Masquerade", and even "Evilswarm Ouroboros", or other generally useful Rank 4 monsters like "Number 39: Utopia", "Gagaga Cowboy", "Maestroke the Symphony Djinn" and "Number 50: Blackship of Corn", "Queen Dragun Djinn" (to revive "Harpie's Pet Dragon" or "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms"), "Abyss Dweller", "Number 101: Silent Honors Ark Knight", and "Evilswarm Exciton Knight".
"Blackwing - Zephyros the Elite" is another level 4 monster that fits perfectly in Harpie decks. Zephyros can special summon itself by returning one of your cards to your hand, although you take 400 damage and you can only use his effect once per duel. Zephyros can help reuse cards like "Hysteric Sign", "Hysteric Party", or even "Fiendish Chain". You can also return your "Harpies' Hunting Ground" to keep it from being destroyed by it's own effect, or use it for "Summoner Monk" or "Harpie Channeler". You can also Special Summon him straight from your deck through "Summoner Monk" for Rank 4 plays, including "Number 66: Master Key Beetle", which can protect "Harpies' Hunting Ground" from being destroyed by its own effect, or can be used as a tribute fodder for "Eradicator Epidemic Virus"
"Ice Beast Zerofyne" is a powerful Xyz Monster that requires 2 Level 4 Winged Beast monsters, also has the ability to negate all face-up cards your opponent controls and gain 300 ATK for each other face-up card on the field until your next Standby Phase by detaching 1 Xyz Material From this card, giving more monster negation power to Harpies while destroying Spell/Trap cards.
Other good cards you can add to a Harpie Deck are "Effect Veiler", "Fiendish Chain", and "Breakthrough Skill". These cards can help patch up the deck's weakness of being generally vulnerable to monster effects.
Other cards that will work well with Harpies are "Windrose the Elemental Lord" and "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms". These monsters are powerful sweepers in their own right, and their effects help them fit into a Harpie Deck quite easily. "Windrose the Elemental Lord" will destroy all of an opponent's Spell and Trap cards when Summoned, but if he leaves the field, you will have to skip the battle phase of your next turn (not the turn that it is Summoned). "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms" can be Special Summoned from the hand or Graveyard by banishing two monsters that are Dragon-Type and/or WIND from your Graveyard. This can be used to adjust the number of monsters in your grave so that you may summon "Windrose the Elemental Lord", who needs exactly 5 WIND monsters in your graveyard. "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms" has another useful effect that fits perfectly into any good Harpie deck. It can be discarded along with another WIND monster to add a dragon from your deck to your hand. The ideal target being "Harpie's Pet Dragon". "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms" can also be used with "Harpie Channeler" for Rank 7 Summons. You can also combine "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms" with "Sacred Sword of Seven Stars" to add more draw power and consistency. However "Tempest, Dragon Ruler of Storms" and "Sacred Sword of Seven Stars" are Limited in the January 2014 list, making the combo inconsistant.
Another good card to use with Harpies is "Kagetokage". Kagetokage is a Level 4 monster that can be Special Summoned from the hand with its effect when the player Normal Summons a Level 4 monster. Since almost all Harpie monsters are Level 4, you can splash this card in Harpies Decks, giving Harpies more swarm power, more Xyz range and more DARK targets for "Dark Simorgh". You can also splash "King of the Feral Imps", since he only requires 2 Level 4 monsters to help search out "Kagetokage" from your Deck, and also another DARK target for "Dark Simorgh" and "Deck Devastation Virus".
"Harpie Lady Phoenix Formation" is a powerful Spell Card for Harpies that can destroy a number of the opponents monsters up to the number of the player's "Harpie Lady" and/or "Harpie Lady Sisters" monsters, and inflicts damage equal to the highest original ATK among them, giving powerful monster destruction to Harpies. However, 3 or more "Harpie Ladies" and/or "Harpie Lady Sisters" are required to activate this card, and after it is activated the player cannot Special Summon from the Main Deck or conduct their Battle Phase. Since "Harpie Queen" and "Harpie Channeler" are treated as "Harpie Lady" on the field, they can be used for the Harpie Lady requirement. Also, since "Harpie Lady Phoenix Formation" is a Harpie card, it can be added from your Deck to your hand with "Hysteric Sign".
"Harpie Dancer" is a Harpie monster that returns any WIND monster you control to the hand to Normal Summon an extra WIND monster. "Harpie Dancer" can be used with "Harpies' Hunting Ground" to destroy an extra Spell/Trap card and avoid "Bottomless Trap Hole". "Harpie Dancer" combines extremely well with "Divine Wind of Mist Valley" to increase swarm power in Harpie Decks and bring out big Xyz Monsters (either Rank 4 or 7 if you bring out "Harpie Channeler" and use her effect to get "Harpie's Pet Dragon"). However, "Divine Wind of Mist Valley" is Limited in the January 2014 list, making Divine Wind less playable in Harpie decks.
"Magical Hats" is a good Trap Card that works well with "Hysteric Sign", but can only be used during the opponent's Battle Phase and you must control a monster to use it. You can also use it with cards like "Elegant Egotist" (since you can retrieve it with "Hysteric Sign"), "Breakthrough Skill", and even "Skill Prisoner" (which can protect your monsters from "Effect Veiler" and other monster effects that target).
Despite the many powerful combos that "Harpies" are capable of, there are still weaknesses within this archetype that can be capitalized on. For instance, all "Harpie" monsters, except "Cyber Harpie Lady", "Harpie Queen", "Harpie's Pet Dragon" and "Harpie's Pet Phantasmal Dragon" are generally low in original ATK. Without an ATK boost, they may easily be destroyed by powerful monsters and are vunerable to cards such as "King Tiger Wanghu" and "Deck Devastation Virus". You can add "Harpie Lady 1", "Bladefly", and/or "Rising Air Current" to avoid these problems. Harpie monsters can also have problems with big monsters with attacks of 2500 or more. This problem can be solved by Xyz Summoning a monster with either a high attack or a powerful effect, Also you can use "Harpie Lady Phoenix Formation" to destroy those powerful monsters if you have 3 Harpie Ladies and/or Harpie Lady Sisters. Also, you can Xyz Summon "Number 91: Thunder Spark Dragon" and use its effect to destroy all other face-up monsters on the field to take care of powerful monsters, or Xyz Summon "Evilswarm Exciton Knight" to destroy all other cards on the field.
Cards that restrict the Special Summoning of monsters, such as "Archlord Kristya", "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo", "Jowgen the Spiritualist" and the "Vanity" cards can also cause problems to this archetype. You can use monster removal cards like "Icarus Attack" and "Spiritual Wind Art - Miyabi" to help with those problems. Also, you can use "Breakthrough Skill" and "Fiendish Chain" to negate their effects. Finally, "Poisonous Winds" is very useful against this Deck, though it can easily be destroyed by "Harpies' Hunting Ground".
Harpies use effects to swarm the field and power-up each other, so cards that negate monster effects like "Effect Veiler", "Breakthrough Skill", "Fiendish Chain", "Forbidden Chalice", "Mermail Abyssgaios", "Divine Wrath", etc. can hurt them and slow them down greatly; "Skill Drain" and "Destiny HERO - Plasma" can put Harpies in a very difficult situation. Spell/Trap cards that remove cards from the field like "Mystical Space Typhoon", "Dust Tornado", "Icarus Attack", "Spiritual Wind Art - Miyabi", "Mind Drain" (stops "Effect Veiler"), Skill Prisoner (same as "Mind Drain"), etc. can help get rid of those cards. However, the effects of "Harpie Lady 1", "Harpie Lady 2", "Harpie Lady 3" and "Cyber Harpie Lady" that treat their names as "Harpie Lady" is a condition, and as such cannot be negated.
"Maxx "C"" can cause problems since Harpies Special Summon a lot with Chainable effects, causing your opponent to draw 1 card for each of your Special Summons. Also, since Harpies mainly Xyz Summon, "Flying "C"" can shut down the Deck; this can easily be solved by using "Mind Drain".