Each of them is Level 6 (with the exception of "Zaborg" and "Tenmataitei", who are Level 5), has 2400 ATK and 1000 DEF and has a unique ability that activates upon its own Tribute Summon (except "Tenmataitei"), although "Kuraz the Light Monarch" and "Delg the Dark Monarch" do not require that they be Tribute Summoned or even Normal Summoned to trigger their abilities. They often have effects dealing with removing cards from the field. Each has an Attribute reflective of the element they control.
Shadow Specters introduced the "Mega Monarchs", a series of upgraded forms for each "Monarch". All "Mega Monarchs" released so far are Level 8, can be Tribute Summoned by Tributing another monster that was Tribute Summoned, and have 2800 ATK and 1000 DEF, as well as upgraded effects based on their element (e.g. "Granmarg the Mega Monarch" destroys 2 Set cards instead of one, and if Tribute Summoned by Tributing an EARTH monster, allows the player to draw a card).
Additionally, there is an archetype of "Monarch" Spell and Trap Cards (including cards like "March of the Monarchs" and "The Monarchs Erupt") that are designed to support Tribute Summons and monsters with ATK and DEF similar to "Monarch" monsters, although they often prevent Summons from the Extra Deck. Many of these cards depict the transformation of a Monarch into their Mega Monarch form, and are released in the same sets as Mega Monarchs.
When evolved to their "Mega Monarch" form, each one of them presents similar characteristics to their original forms, with more armor and other changes related to their respective Attributes. Additionally, they are all seen carrying a giant ring on their backs, which is also present with "Ehther" and "Erebus".
"Monarch" Decks tend to be very aggressive and powerful, because "Monarchs" destroy the opponent's assets just by hitting the Field, and they are strong enough in ATK to be able to press their advantage and destroy nearly any lower-Level monster the opponent may happen to use in response. "Monarchs" have no real weaknesses other than Decks that strictly run "Zombie World", which almost completely shuts down the "Monarchs", and their insatiable need to generate Tribute fodder for more "Monarchs" to be Summoned and that they cannot use their effects when Special Summoned (with the exceptions of "Kuraz" and "Delg".)
"Monarchs" can be difficult to overcome due to the fact that they destroy cards simply by appearing, but there are still some good strategies against them. These include:
- "Forced Back", "Solemn Warning" and "Pulling the Rug": These cards negate the Summon of "Monarchs", and thereby their effects, and remove them from the field, essentially wasting the "Monarch" user's efforts.
- "Mask of Restrict", "Fog King" or "Zombie World": These cards effectively prevent Tribute Summons and as a result prevent "Monarchs" from hitting the field and activating their effects (except for "Kuraz" or "Delg" since their effects activate when Normal Summoned without a Tribute or when Special Summoned too). However, Zombie World is unable to stop the summon of Erebus the Underworld Monarch, as it is a Zombie-Type monster to start off with.
- "Vanity's Fiend", "Vanity's Ruler", "Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo" and "Archlord Kristya": These cards can completely shut down "Frognarch"/"Formula Monarch" Decks, as they rely heavily on Special Summoning to get out tribute fodder ("Treeborn Frog", namely) and Synchro Monsters. This is particularly deadly against builds that don't use "Soul Exchange" or "The Monarchs Stormforth.
- "By Order of the Emperor", "Destiny HERO - Plasma" and "Skill Drain": These cards negate on-field effects, turning "Monarchs" into beat-sticks. "Grave of the Super Ancient Organism" can be used to limit "Kuraz" and "Delg" use, but it is not recommended since it targets only Special Summoned monsters and they can still be Tributed if needed.
- "Intercept": Lets you take control of a "Monarch" right when it gets Summoned which can be a nasty surprise for most "Monarch" users.
- "Blast Held by a Tribute": Even more destructive than a "Mirror Force" since it also inflicts damage, but not as reliable as other methods of getting the better of "Monarchs", since there is a chance that they will destroy this card before they attack.
- "Turbo Warrior": Its effect makes him immune to the effects of "Zaborg", "Raiza", "Caius" and "Kuraz". It has just enough ATK to be able to destroy any of them in battle.
- "Rivalry of Warlords": This card prevents having more than one Type of monsters on the field. It also prevents a new Type from being Summoned, including Tribute Summoning; so if the opponent controls a "Gravekeeper's Spy", they cannot Tribute it to Summon any "Monarch" (except for "Delg"). "Gozen Match" is not recommended as an alternative as most Tributes are DARK and "Caius" is the most used "Monarch".
- "Ritual Cage" and "Hymn of Light": These cards protect Ritual Monsters from most "Monarchs" and makes them waste their effect.
- "The Huge Revolution is Over": Stops "Kuraz" or "Mobius" from destroying your cards, and then you get rid of them for quite some time by having them banished.
- "Clear Wing Synchro Dragon": This monster can negate any monster's effect that targets a level 5 or higher monster on the field and destroy it, meaning it can protect itself from any Monarch's effect, and if you don't select him as a target, it can also negate the activation of the effect of a level 5 or higher monster and destroy it. Moreover, if this monster destroy a monster with its effect, it gains ATK equal to the destroyed monster ATK. Note also that even if you don't use your monarchs' effects, this monster still has 2500 ATK points, so it can easily handle any monarch in battle (except for the Mega Monarchs).
- "Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon" can be even deadlier against "Monarchs" because it negate the activation of any Level monster's effect, as well as gain the ATK power of that monster whenever it battles a Level 5 or higher monster.
"March of the Monarchs" will protect any Tribute Summoned monsters from being targeted or destroyed by card effects, while "Return of the Monarchs" allows you to search for a "Monarch" every time you Tribute Summon. Since the aforementioned cards prevent the player from Summoning monsters from the Extra Deck, the Deck rarely utilizes Synchro Monsters or Xyz Monsters, although it's still possible to Summon them occasionally. This disadvantage, however, also allows the Deck to run "The Seal of Orichalcos", which can bring all your "Monarchs" up to a hefty 2900 ATK.
"Treeborn Frog" is very ineffective in this build due to the consistent presence of Continuous Spell Cards, so "The Monarchs Stormforth" (better with "Escalation of the Monarchs") are highly recommended both to create Tribute fodder and remove the opponent's powerful monsters from the field. "The First Monarch" works very well in this type of Deck, providing walls against the opponent's attacks, Tribute fodder for "Monarchs" and, at the cost of a discard, the ability to change its Attribute and count as two Tributes.
This allows you to take advantage of the effects of "Granmarg the Mega Monarch" and "Mobius the Mega Monarch". "Spell Striker" also works well in this variant due to the large number of Spells. Like any "Monarch" Deck, it suffers from potential bad opening hands. "Pot of Duality" is recommended to help remedy this, and provide extra Spells for "Spell Striker" to banish. Overall, the Deck's wins can usually be attributed to successive "Monarch" Summons (and therefore searches from "Return") each turn, with "March" protecting them from card effects. Due to the goal of always having a "Monarch" on the field, the Deck can easily take advantage of the "The Monarchs Awaken" to make "Monarchs" unaffected by card effects, as well as "Grisaille Prison" to combat the opponent's Synchro and Xyz Monsters.
Monarch Control is a Deck that quickly Special Summons monsters to the Field and Tribute those monsters to Summon a "Monarch" monster and activate their effects to gain more Field advantage. Some good Tributes are "Spell Striker", "Samsara Kaiser", "Marshmallon" and many more. Each "Monarch" has unique effects to gain Field advantage when Tribute Summoned, this will be the key of winning with this Deck. The "Treeborn Monarch combo" might work at this Deck, since "Treeborn Frog" shall always be Summoned from your Graveyard, allowing a Tribute fodder for the Monarchs. "Gorz the Emissary of Darkness" is a great addition to this Deck because this can be Tributed for "Monarchs" and when your Field is empty, you can Special Summon this. "Light and Darkness Dragon" is also a great addition because it will protect the "Monarchs" from getting destroyed and when this card is destroyed, you can Special Summon a monster from your graveyard to be Tributed for a "Monarch". Also, a good addition to this Deck would be some 'searchers' like "Mystic Tomato" or "Shining Angel" because if it is destroyed by battle, you can search for another monster, ensuring a monster to Tribute for a "Monarch" during your next turn.
This Deck relies on reusing the effects of "D.D. Survivor" and "D.D. Scout Plane" with the help of "Macro Cosmos" and/or "Dimensional Fissure", which will allow the said monsters to keep coming back each End Phase, allowing you to Tribute Summon a "Monarch" each turn. Other cards that are commonly used in this Deck are "Cyber Valley," some of the other "D.D." monsters, like "D.D. Warrior Lady", "Soul Absorption", which can give its controller massive Life Point gain each turn, and "Gravekeeper's Servant", which can make a lock for all of your opponent's monsters, preventing them from attacking for as long as they cannot send a card from their Deck to their Graveyard. You can use "Enemy Controller" to Tribute a "Survivor" or "Scout Plane" and take control of one of your opponents monsters. Then Tribute it for a "Monarch", and the "Scout Plane" or "Survivor" will return in the End Phase.
Perfect Circle Monarch
This Deck uses the "Destiny HERO" engine to get an advantage in their game, but with the banning of "Destiny HERO - Disk Commander", it has become less effective. These are Graveyard based Decks that can easily bring out a Level 8 Synchro Monster or draw cards.
This Deck has a similar purpose to "Frognarchs". You have "Tytannial, Princess of Camellias" to give the ability to stop you opponent. You have "Spore" as a tuner. You also have "Dandylion", "Naturia Pineapple", "Naturia Cherries" and "Treeborn Frog" as tribute fodder. You can also use "Mark of the Rose" to gain "Monarch" control. The downside to this Deck is that if you cannot main only Beast-Type and Plant-Type monsters in your Graveyard, "Naturia Pineapple" becomes useless.
Extra Deck Monarchs
This Deck works very similarly to other "Monarch" Decks in regards to Normal Summoning the "Monarchs". However, it also utilizes Special Summoning in the "Squire" and "Super Quant" engines. The initial strategy is to use "Edea the Heavenly Squire" to Summon "Eidos the Underworld Squire" to give you an extra Normal Summon for a "Monarch". The "Super Quant" engine works through using "Super Quantum Blue Layer" and "Super Quantum Red Layer". "Emergency Teleport" is used to Special Summon "Super Quantum Blue Layer" to search "Super Quantum Red Layer".The effect of "Domain of the True Monarchs" allows for just one Tribute for your Normal Summon of a Level 8 "Monarch" via "Super Quantum Blue Layer".
With the announcement of "Supreme King Dragon Zarc" in Maximum Crisis, a variant of Monarchs appeared, which revolves around using "Zaborg the Mega Monarch" to send multiples of Dragon-Type Fusion, Synchro, and Xyz Pendulum Monsters (typically "Greedy Venom Fusion Dragon", "Crystal Wing Synchro Dragon", "Odd-Eyes Rebellion Dragon", and "Odd-Eyes Raging Dragon") to the Graveyard, where they can be banished with "Dragon's Mirror" or "Miracle Synchro Fusion" to Fusion Summon at least one copy of "Zarc" with ease. This method can additionally Fusion Summon "Naturia Exterio" or "Ultimate Axon Kicker" in the same turn, by also sending copies of "PSY-Framelord Omega", "Naturia Barkion", and "Naturia Beast" to the Graveyard via "Zaborg". By sending "Predaplant Chimera Rafflesia" to the Graveyard with the effect of "Zaborg", "Miracle Synchro Fusion" becomes searchable for the Deck.
- "Return of the Monarchs" may be a reference to the Star Wars movies, in which case, further support for the "Monarchs" may also contain this reference, such as a plausible translation for "Ambush of the Monarchs" being "The Monarchs Strike Back".
- The names of the four new monsters in the Emperor of Darkness Structure Deck starts with "E" ("Ehther", "Erebus", "Eidos" and "Edea").
Summoners (Normal Spell Cards)
|Moonface the Silver
|Leon the Lead
|Salamandra the Steel
|Ouroboros the Bronze
|Ekenas the Mercury
|Aretos the Tin
Tin Spell Circle
|Aroma||None Yet||Cananga||Bergamot||Jasmine / Angelica / Rosemary||Rosemary||Jar|
(500 ATK▲/400 DEF▼)
|Mystic Plasma Zone||Gaia Power||Molten Destruction||Luminous Spark||Umiiruka||Rising Air Current|
|Attribute Reptiles||Umbral Soul||Raging Earth||Firestorm Prominence||Radiant Spirit||Silent Abyss||Destruction Cyclone|
|Attribute Summoners||Mystic Tomato||Giant Rat||UFO Turtle||Shining Angel||Mother Grizzly||Flying Kamakiri #1|
|B.E.S.||Big Core||Covered Core||Big Core MK-2||Assault Core / Big Core MK-3||Crystal Core||Tetran|
|Boosters (500 ATK▲/400 DEF▼)||Witch's Apprentice||Milus Radiant||Little Chimera||Hoshiningen||Star Boy||Bladefly|
Glow Moss / Twinkle Moss
Glow / None Yet
Aqua Dolphin / Marine Dolphin
Aqua / Marine
|Dice Roll Archfiends||Terrorking||Vilepawn||Infernalqueen||Desrook||Darkbishop||Shadowknight|
|The Trojan Horse
|Kaiser Sea Horse
|Dustons (1/0/1000 Fiends)||Star||Yellow||Red||House / White||Blue||Green|
|Eidolon Beasts||Caligula||Magallanica||Purgatorio||Merkabah / Elysion||Cocytus||Raidjin|
|Elemental HERO Fusion Monsters
(1 "HERO" + 1 matching Attribute)
|Escuridao||Gaia||Nova Master||The Shining||Absolute Zero||Great Tornado|
(400 ATK▲/200 DEF▼)
|Sword of Dark Destruction||Invigoration||Burning Spear||Elf's Light||Steel Shell||Gust Fan|
Shooting Star Bow
Twin Swords of Flashing Light
Rod of Silence
|Kaiju||Radian||Kumongous||Dogoran||Jizukiru / Mecha-Dogoran / Thunder King||Gameciel||Gadarla|
|Legendary Planets||Jupiter / Saturn / Sun||Terra Firma||Mars||Venus / Uranus||Mercury / Neptune||None Yet|
|Non-Fusion Masked HERO
Level 6 M-HERO Fusion Monster
Level 8 M-HERO Fusion Monster
|Mirror Force variants||Dark||Quaking||Blazing||Radiant||Drowning||Storming|
|Monarchs||Caius / Delg / Erebus / Angmarl / Tenma||Granmarg||Thestalos||Zaborg / Kuraz / Ehther||Mobius||Raiza|
Related "Monarch" Spell/Trap Card
|Caius / None Yet / None Yet / None Yet / None Yet
Tenacity / None Yet / The First / None Yet / None Yet
|Zaborg / None Yet / None Yet
Strike / None Yet / The Prime
|Monarch "Vassal"||Lucius / None Yet / Eidos / None Yet / None Yet||Landrobe||Berlineth||Mithra / None Yet / Edea||Escher||Garum|
|Musical Djinns||Maestroke the Symphony||Temtempo the Percussion||None Yet||Melomelody the Brass||Humhumming the Key||Muzurhythm the String|
|Odd-Eyes Dragons||Odd-Eyes / Pendulum / Rebellion / Phantom / Persona||Gravity||Meteorburst||Saber||Absolute||Vortex|
|Pendulum Magicians||Stargazer / Timegazer / Xiangke / Timebreaker / Acrobatic / Dragoncalling||Dragonpulse||Nobledragon||Xiangsheng / Wisdom-Eye / Dharma-Eye||Dragonpit||Oafdragon|
(below Level 4 Fiend-type tuners)
|Dark / Synkron||Clock||Flare / Red||Barrier / Chain / Mirror||Force||Creation|
|El Shaddoll Fusion Monsters
(1 "Shaddoll" + 1 matching Attribute)
Legendary Six Samurai
|Nitro / Jet
Nitro / Jet
|True Draco||V.F.D.||Lithosazim / Draius III||Agnimazud / Ignis Heat||Da'at Metatron / Master Peace||Bahrstos / Dynamite Knuckle||Mariamune / Majesty Maiden|
|Yang Zing Effect Monsters
Yang Zing Synchro Monsters
|Jiaotu / Taotie
|Bi'an / Zefraxi / Zefraniu||Suanni||Chiwen
Baxia / Chaofeng / Denglong